Facebook Reportedly Violates Canadian Privacy Law
by Michael Barkoviak - July 20, 2009 1:01 PM
" Facebook faces legal issues in Canada
Facebook is under fire because of its privacy settings, with Canadian officials criticizing the No. 1 social networking site, demanding changes to how the site operates for Canadian users.
The Canadian privacy commission believes the social networking site offers "confusing or incomplete information to subscribers." Canadian Privacy Commissioner Jennifer Stoddart agreed Facebook has made some changes, but said there are still major privacy gaps that must be fixed immediately.
Facebook has agreed to work with Canada to improve its privacy settings, mainly focusing on third parties that post content such as quizzes and games. Specifically, around 950,000 developers have too much access to personal details of many Facebook users. Canada also has a problem with information from deactivated accounts being kept on the site, with privacy experts requesting Facebook delete the profile if it's no longer in use.
Facebook reportedly has around 250 million active users, making it the No. 1 social networking site in the world, with 12 million from Canada. The social networking site will continue to try and safeguard its users' privacy while at the same time not compromising the openness of the site, Facebook officials said. Stoddard plans to monitor Facebook's progress over the next 30 days, and then will decide what to do.
Canadian law dictates she has the ability to take Facebook to federal court if Facebook doesn't enforce new privacy rules. The issue shouldn't make it to federal court any time soon -- Facebook executives are working with Canada to ensure it is able to modify privacy settings to make everyone happy.
Canada is the first nation to attack Facebook directly, though it's possible other nations may call for Facebook to alter its privacy settings. Earlier in July, Facebook modified security procedures for users, making it easier for individual users to control what information they share with others. "