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All you need to know about Cambridge Analytica Scandal

Social media is an important part of today’s world. According to stats, the number of monthly active users on different types of social media platforms is expected to reach approx. 3.02 billion by 2021 (around a third of Earth’s total population). Social media is providing lots of opportunities to not only connect with new people, but also to increase the knowledge, business and audience. Facebook is the largest social media platform and there are 2.2 billion monthly active users. You can have a lot of advantages on these sites and can use it in a lot of ways. But, there is a major concern of chances of leakage of your personal data on these sites. Sites like Facebook uses some important data of its users and it claims that your personal data is safe and is not sharing with anyone. However, in recent past, some of the people, majorly from United States are seeing a strange link on their Facebook newsfeeds. If you are seeing something similar, there are chances that your important personal data has been leaked. Facebook is providing its users some details of the apps they’re using as well as the types of data these apps could have collected.

What about this data leak?

Facebook always shares data of its users. For example, if you’re logging into your Instagram account, Facebook shares it with Instagram. There are some news revolving around that Cambridge Analytica, a British data mining-firm is allegedly accessing data of Facebook users with the help of a third-party quiz app, and with the help of that data, it tried to build psychological profiles to influence the voters with political ads. Although, Cambridge Analytica denied any kind of misuse.

Why it is serious?

It’s a serious issue because it means personal information of approx. 87 million was may be used to influence their vote. It could have influenced the political views of people by putting certain ads to the news feed of selected people. It is believed that users got some misleading ads especially related to issues they were feeling strongly about, and it was designed to provoke a certain reaction and a share as well. There are some facts which are giving some strength to this news. Cambridge Analytica shares strong relationships with some of Donald Trump’s biggest donors. For example, Rebekah Mercer, the owner of Breitbart News donated immensely to the election campaigns organized for President Trump. Some of the lawmakers are also suggesting that Facebook is not taking enough steps to combat fake news during elections.

What are the options you have if your data was leaked?

You must be aware and active about some unnecessary posts and links. Before appearance of warning links, you must check that if your data was leaked. Facebook just released a tool to check that and you can use that tool. With the help of that tool, you can select which apps can have your data and which ones can’t, which can reduce the risk of leakage to some extent. You also can explore the Privacy Settings of Facebook about how you’re protected and how you aren’t. If you’re particularly concerned about Cambridge Analytica, you don’t have to do much as the data leak happened over a year ago.

 

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