What you need to know about Facebook’s latest privacy tool

What you need to know about Facebook’s latest privacy tool

2021-01-12 16:00:00

Facebook gives users more details about the data it collects about them and how it is used.

The company works its function & # 39; Access your data & # 39; Bee, first rolled out in 2018, to make it easier for users to see their personal information and activity on the site, as well as how it can be used to target advertising to them. This is what it does – and what it doesn't.

The feature is now available for iOS and Android devices, and Facebook says it will roll out to other platforms soon. If you want to see it for yourself, go to Settings and privacy> Privacy shortcuts> Your Facebook information> Access your information.

Mobile app users see eight categories of data when they click 'Access your data' taps: their activity on Facebook, friends and followers, preferences, personal information, registered information, advertising information, apps and websites outside of Facebook, and security and login information. Most of this data was already available to users, but the update makes it more detailed and explains what it all means. Considering that many Facebook users still don't realize or understand it how some of these things work, more transparency is a good thing.

“We want to make sure that your information on Facebook is useful, easy to understand, and easy to find,” the company said in a statement blog post announcement of the update. "All of these changes were made in response to our own research that showed us how people already interacted with Access Your Information – for example, the new categories were developed based on what people were already clicking."

The new look of the menu Access your information from Facebook.

The menu Access your information from Facebook has been given a new look.

Facebook will also tell you how your data can be used to target ads to you (also known as "Personalize Your Experience"). You can already see this information by clicking on & # 39; Why am I seeing this ad? & # 39; on the ads themselves, but this puts it in a second location, and one where the connection between your data and how Facebook uses it is clearer. The company has also added a search function within Access Your Information to make it easier to find what you are looking for.

Facebook, along with many other tech platforms, has been trying in recent years to make its data collection practices more transparent and give users more control over them – up to a point at least. The company now shows users how Facebook tracks them when they visit other websites and has that data removed and prevents Facebook from targeting them with ads based on it. And it has made it easier for users to see and manage the length and breadth of their Facebook activity on the platform. As a purely hypothetical example, you can easily find and remove or hide embarrassing after-party photos of the 2009 roller derby that you might not want to be associated with in 2021.

But you still can't figure out exactly how or why you were targeted by a specific ad (the 'Why am I seeing this ad?' Feature from Facebook always adds the caveat that 'there can be there are also more factors not listed here & # 39;), and Facebook will still target ads to you based on your profile information and your location, even if you turn off personalized ads. This doesn't stop Facebook from collecting that information at all. After all, there are limits to what Facebook wants you to know about what it knows about you.

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