Facebook Details New Privacy Policy

Facebook vice president of communications and public policy Elliot Schrage detailed the social-networking site’s new privacy policy in a post on the Facebook Blog.

Some of the highlights:

Viewing and editing your profile: You may change or delete your profile information at any time by going to your profile page and clicking “Edit My Profile.” Information will be updated immediately. While you cannot delete your date of birth, you can use the setting on the info tab of your profile information page to hide all or part of it from other users.

Deactivating or deleting your account: If you want to stop using your account, you may deactivate it or delete it. When you deactivate an account, no user will be able to see it, but it will not be deleted. We save your profile information (friends, photos, interests, etc.) in case you later decide to reactivate your account. Many users deactivate their accounts for temporary reasons and, in doing so, are asking us to maintain their information until they return to Facebook. You will still have the ability to reactivate your account and restore your profile in its entirety. When you delete an account, it is permanently deleted. You should only delete your account if you are certain you never want to reactivate it. You may deactivate your account on your account settings page or delete your account on this help page.

Limitations on removal: Even after you remove information from your profile or delete your account, copies of that information may remain viewable elsewhere to the extent it has been shared with others, it was otherwise distributed pursuant to your privacy settings, or it was copied or stored by other users. However, your name will no longer be associated with that information on Facebook. (For example, if you post something to another user’s profile and then you delete your account, that post may remain, but be attributed to an “Anonymous Facebook User.”) Additionally, we may retain certain information to prevent identity theft and other misconduct even if deletion has been requested.

Backup copies: Removed and deleted information may persist in backup copies for up to 90 days, but will not be available to others.

The information we provide to advertisers is “anonymized,” meaning that it can’t be traced back to you as an individual in any way. For example, we won’t tell an advertiser that you clicked on an ad, but we might report that, of the 100 people who clicked on the ad, 63% were female.

In this update, we also have explained how we might use information from other sites to improve the quality of our ads. This information allows advertisers to do what is commonly called “conversion tracking,” which helps them measure the effectiveness of their ads and make them more relevant. Most advertisers already do this in other places on the Web. Should Facebook provide this, we’ll continue to respect your privacy by not sharing your information with advertisers, and we’ll anonymize any information we receive.

In the past, we’ve provided a redline version of the new policy document we’re proposing to make clear what’s new. Unfortunately, in this case, the revision is so different from the current policy that this wasn’t possible. You can read the proposed update in its entirety and post comments to the Facebook Site Governance Page before the comment period ends at noon PST Nov. 5. After the comment period is over, we’ll review your feedback and update you on our next steps. We appreciate and strongly encourage your participation in this process.

david.cohen@adweek.com David Cohen is editor of Adweek's Social Pro Daily.
Publish date: October 30, 2009 https://dev.adweek.com/digital/facebook-details-new-privacy-policy/ © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT