Facebook suspends 200 apps over possible data misuse

New Delhi: Facebook is auditing each and every app that has access to the data of its over 2 billion users and has already suspended 200 apps which failed to comply with its policies, the social media giant said on Monday.

The company CEO Mark Zuckerberg had promised a thorough investigation and audit into apps that had access to information before Facebook changed its platform policies in 2014 — significantly reducing the data apps could access.

“The investigation process is in full swing, and it has two phases. First, a comprehensive review to identify every app that had access to this amount of Facebook data.

“And second, where we have concerns, we will conduct interviews, make requests for information (RFI) — which ask a series of detailed questions about the app and the data it has access to — and perform audits that may include on-site inspections,” Ime Archibong, Vice President of Product Partnerships at Facebook, said in a blog post.

Zuckerberg had made its clear that any app that either refused or failed an audit would be banned from Facebook.

Archibong said that large teams of internal and external experts are working hard to investigate these apps as quickly as possible.

“To date, thousands of apps have been investigated and around 200 have been suspended — pending a thorough investigation into whether they did in fact misuse any data,” the executive noted.

If Facebook finds evidence that these or other apps did misuse data, it will ban them and notify users via Help Centre on its website.

“It will show people if they or their friends installed an app that misused data before 2015 — just as we did for Cambridge Analytica,” Archibong said.

Appearing before the US Congress in April, Zuckerberg told lawmakers that his own personal data was part of 87 million Facebook users that was improperly shared with British political consultancy firm Cambridge Analytica.

Mired in the massive data breach controversy, Facebook has rolled out biggest-ever shuffle at the senior management level since its inception — across platforms, including WhatsApp and Messenger.