The Wall Street Journal has reported that Facebook and other social networking sites are sending personal information of their members to advertisers. This was something that all of the social networks promised would not happen. So who is getting this data? Can you spell Google and Yahoo?
It gets better, boys and girls. These companies stated that they were unaware that this information was being sent to them. Even if they did, they would not use such information to increase their profits, because they love us all.
The article also states that:
Across the Web, it’s common for advertisers to receive the address of the page from which a user clicked on an ad. Usually, they receive nothing more about the user than an unintelligible string of letters and numbers that can’t be traced back to an individual. With social networking sites, however, those addresses typically include user names that could direct advertisers back to a profile page full of personal information. In some cases, user names are people’s real names.
Most social networks haven’t bothered to obscure user names or ID numbers from their Web addresses, said Craig Wills, a professor of computer science at Worcester Polytechnic Institute, who has studied the issue.
The sites may have been breaching their own privacy policies as well as industry standards, which say sites shouldn’t share and advertisers shouldn’t collect personally identifiable information without users’ permission. Those policies have been put forward by advertising and Internet companies in arguments against the need for government regulation.
I think that Congress needs to set up a committee to investigate this immediately. After all, our elected officials have nothing better to do than to protect us from ourselves! LOL