Facebook users have reacted cautiously to comments made by Mark Zuckerberg during an ongoing US Senate hearing that’s investigating the data breach with the political consulting firm Cambridge Analytica.
Mr Zuckerberg admitted Facebook scans, stores and records messages, images and links sent on the Messenger app.
With more than 10 billion messages being sent on the Messenger app per day, Facebook users are again wondering how important their online privacy is to the social media giant.
Although Messenger conversations are private, Facebook says it scans them to prevent abusive behaviour and inappropriate material.
In 2013, Cambridge University researcher Aleksandr Kogan collected the data through an app then developed and connected it to Facebook.
Aleksandr later sold Facebook users data to Cambridge Analytica which collects data for use in the electoral process.
The firm was able to gather personal information from more than 87 million Facebook users.
While only 53 Australians actively participated in the This is your Digital Life quiz app which supplied data to Cambridge Analytica, more than 300,000 people from Australia may have had their data improperly shared.
The social media giant began notifying users on Monday if their personal information was violated by Cambridge Analytica.
If you have not received a notification on your newsfeed and want to know if your privacy was breached, visit Facebook’s help centre https://www.facebook.com/help/.
For concerned parents with children who use the Kids’ Messenger app, Mark Zuckerberg has defended the service saying in a statement the company collects minimal information which is not shared to third parties.
Facebook has also announced a new feature which will allow users to ‘unsend’ a message on the app.
The app will replace the deleted message with a generic message reading ‘this message was deleted.’
The feature was announced after reports the company had been deleting messages sent from Zuckerberg’s personal account to users who corresponded with the CEO.
However, there is no indication as to when this feature will be available to all users.
We asked people their thoughts on Facebook’s privacy violations.