The controversy surrounding Facebook and Cambridge Analytica has been the center of the media’s attention these past few months. The scandal caused an uproar from Facebook users worldwide. However, it seems like the issue goes beyond the confines of the social network as another platform is also revealed to be involved.
Reports of Twitter allegedly selling data access to the political consulting firm in 2015 have surfaced. To make matters more problematic, the data access was sold to Aleksandr Kogan, the same person who obtained the millions of private user data from Facebook. Twitter has long removed its ties with Cambridge Analytica as well, so the issue does not run as deep as the Facebook scandal.
A report by The Telegraph last April was one of the first to break the news, and the publication caught up with Kogan at one point. In a short interview, Kogan said that he complied with Twitter’s privacy policies. However, he did not disclose the level of access he received from the social media platform.
In a statement to Bloomberg, Twitter said that Kogan’s marketing enterprise, Global Science Research (GSR), had one-time access to a random selection of public tweets from December 2014 to April 2015 with the help of the website’s application programming interfaces (APIs). Twitter adds that after a thorough look at the case, GSR did not have any access to any private user data.
What GSR had access to is data that certain companies, developers, and users that Twitter provides with. The social media platform sells the data acquired from its APIs to other organizations, which they use for analyzing events, customer service, and other relevant aspects of marketing. Twitter is also discerning with regards to whom it will sell the data to. Organizations that want access to the data must first detail their purpose.
Protect the tweets
In a blog post, Rob Johnson, the senior director of product management of Twitter, explains what users are accountable for with public tweets. He says these tweets are visible to everyone. He adds “all of that activity generates publicly available data that is of potential interest to developers and businesses who want to offer Twitter customers experiences and services they might value.”
The post goes on detailing what users can do to protect their tweets. Johnson encourages them to explore their accounts and take more control over it. They are free to adjust their privacy settings as they see fit.
Johnson also says that they value their users’ safety very well and that they have implemented policies regarding it. At the core of the post, though, Johnson wants people to understand Twitter does not disclose any private data like direct messages to outside sources.
Privacy concerns over social networking websites are being raised, and it’s good that users have become more concerned with their accounts. If there is one takeaway from the recent scandals surrounding Cambridge Analytica, it’s that people must be more careful with the information they are releasing online.
(Featured image via DepositPhotos)
Top 5 strategies to boost your business in the post-pandemic world
Businesses around the world have suffered because of the pandemic, regardless if they were small companies or large ones. In...
The demand rebound in the commodities market is still not here
Palm Oil closed higher. Demand reports from the private surveyors are stronger this month. Production ideas are turning seasonally higher...
Is Asia on its way to conquer the global hemp market?
Now that commercial hemp cultivation and CBD production is already booming in China and the first countries in the region...
Ethereum registered new all-time high in daily transactions – DeFi as driver
DeFi has helped to strengthen Ethereum's dominance since it has become an important part of the crypto sector. Every week,...
Kard raises €3 million and changes its business model to become profitable
Kard, the neobank for teenagers has just raised $3.5 million (€3 million) to expand its range of services and deploy...
Featured6 days ago
Top 5 digital banking ideas from today’s most innovative fintech companies
Cannabis5 days ago
First harvest of German medical cannabis is likely to be delayed again
Featured6 days ago
2020 TSX30™ confirms durability of market trends: where to invest now?
Featured5 days ago
The fintech sector in Italy is small but has high potential to support the economy