Facebook Ad Plans Raise Privacy Issues

Seems employees can troll, control, and fiddle with personal data
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 7, 2007 12:49 PM CST
Facebook CEO and founder Mark Zuckerberg speaks to press after he announced Facebook's new product for advertising partners in New York, Monday, November 6, 2007. The online hangout said Tuesday it plans...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – As the advertising industry prepares to harness the personal data of 50 million Facebook users, new privacy concerns are whipping through cyberspace. Valleywag reveals that Facebook employees not only have access to users' profiles and inboxes, but can alter them. And they do—frequently enough that management had to tell developers to "knock it off."

Whether in jest or malice, back-end fooling around with Facebook is raising privacy concerns, and the fallout could be substantial. Users submit their private data out of trust, and losing that trust means losing the material so valuable to marketers. A Facebook spokesman noted that access to the tools in question is "restricted," but did not deny any of the privacy-related claims.