Facebook Tracks Users Without Consent, but Users Can Take Control

Facebook has spent years earning a notorious reputation for sacrificing users’ privacy for increased advertising revenue. Now the social networking giant may be in serious legal trouble with the European Union for violating EU laws about tracking Internet users without their consent.

A report issued by ICRI/CIR and iMinds-SMIT for the Belgian Privacy Commission claims that Facebook is tracking Internet users — even those who are not logged into a Facebook account — and capturing their browsing habits across the web. In many cases, the tracking involves users who do not even have a Facebook account.

The method by which Facebook tracks users is the ubiquitous “Like” button found on most websites. Sites that have the button must allow certain computer scripts to run. These scripts allow Facebook to see what websites users visit even if the users do not click the button. Facebook then uses that information to allow advertisers to direct their ads to targeted users. The practice is controversial in the United States and illegal in the European Union. The issue at stake is that if users agree to have their browsing habits tracked across the Web, it is a valuable service; if they do not, it is an invasion of their privacy. The “Like” button simply appearing on a website does not amount to a user’s consent.

To make matters worse, Facebook also ignores “Do Not Track” requests from users who activate that setting in browsers such as Chrome, Firefox, and Safari. In doing so, Facebook joins ranks with Google and Yahoo as well as a slew of disreputable sites.

FK – I got back on Fake Book after being blocked a couple years back so I can interact with like-minded people and piss off “Liberal”(commie) trash. It’s not like ‘the authorities’ don’t know who I am. FB apparently hasn’t yet figured out it’s me. They wanted my cell no. to ‘verify’ my account and that I wasn’t a ‘spammer'(for using my standard rants to tell idiots and “Liberal”(commie) trash what I’m tired of having to repeat after all these years) at the time and I refused to give it to them. Didn’t have to this time. Don’t know if it’s a policy change or if I just slipped through the cracks.

We’ll see how long it takes the trash to boot me off this time.

I use Ghostery to block a lot of things.