Facebook revamps privacy setting amidst global reactions – and EU's privacy protection planstext_fields
Washington: Facebook yesterday said it will overhaul its privacy settings tools to put users "more in control" of their information on the social media website, news agencies reported.
The updates include improved access to Facebook's user settings and tools to easily search for, download and delete personal data stored by Facebook.
Meanwhile, a new privacy shortcuts menu will allow users to quickly increase account security, manage who can see their information and activity on the site and control advertisements they see.
"We've heard loud and clear that privacy settings and other important tools are too hard to find and that we must do more to keep people informed," chief privacy officer Erin Egan and deputy general counsel Ashlie Beringer said in a blog post.
"We're taking additional steps in the coming weeks to put people more in control of their privacy," they confirmed.
The new features follow fierce criticism after revelations that millions of Facebook users' personal data was harvested by Cambridge Analytica (CA) a British firm linked to Donald Trump's 2016 campaign -- although Facebook said they have been "in the works for some time."
Facebook's measures are also in the wake of European Union's (EU) data privacy regulations in the making, which are noted to be more stringent than before. In the same context global tech behemoths, including Google and Amazon, are scrambling to prepare for the impact of looming EU data privacy regulations.
EU's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) slated to come into force on May 25, contain heavy fines for violators. The level of fines for companies found to be in breach of data protection laws is set to increase significantly under GDPR. Business could be fined as much as 4 percent of global turnover or 20 million euros, whichever is greater.
Among other things, GDPR aims to boost a person's right to be forgotten as well as guaranteeing them free and easy access to their own personal data.