Facebook has received all kinds of bad press lately. They are being hit for privately unsending and deleting Mark Zuckerberg and other top executives messages they have sent through messenger dating back many years. The biggest recent hit of public outrage, though, has to do with Facebook’s breach of users private information that was being collected by Cambridge Analytica. It was recently disclosed that over 87 million users on Facebook had their personal data breached. The data included details on users’ identities, friend networks and “likes.” Cambridge Analytica’s goal was to map what users were interested in and and personality traits and use that information to target audiences with digital ads.
So, how will this information impact businesses and their bottom line? Facebook, after the scandal, came out and announced tighter limits around its API (application programming interface.) They are also placing a free on reviewing new apps on their platform. Instagram, which is an entity of Facebook has also followed in its parent company’s footsteps. Facebook reducing their API calls from 5,000 to 200 to businesses has been hailed by many critics as an overreaction and one that will unjustly hurt businesses for the shortcomings of their own mistakes. A lot of developers and businesses have built businesses off of Facebook depending on certain user data that has all of a sudden disappeared over night. This means a devastating blow for many entrepreneurs who used the platform as a way to build business.
Facebook is going all in, all of a sudden, on user privacy and data access being out. These unannounced, surprising, and drastic sudden changes speak volumes of Facebook’s sudden damage control mode. They may be a winner for users looking for data protection, but their are some unfortunate losers in this situations, besides Facebook. Especially considering all the firms that collect more data than you know they are about you, like Google.