Facebook Bans MyPersonality App Which Shared Personal Data Of Over 4 Million Users

MyPersonality app shared personal data of more than 4 million Facebook users with researchers and third-party companies

Social networking giant Facebook announced on Wednesday that it has banned an app called myPersonality which has likely shared personal data of more than 4 million Facebook users with researchers and third-party companies without taking their permission.

“Today we banned myPersonality — an app that was mainly active prior to 2012 — from Facebook for failing to agree to our request to audit and because it’s clear that they shared information with researchers as well as companies with only limited protections in place,” Facebook’s VP of Product Partnerships, Ime Archibong, noted in an official blog post.

The myPersonality app, which hasn’t been active since 2012, was created by Cambridge Psychometrics Centre researchers to source data from Facebook users through personality quizzes. While Facebook can’t say how the data gathered by “myPersonality” was used, it’s confident enough that the data was mishandled to take action. Notably, the company will start notifying the roughly 4 million people who chose to share their personal information with myPersonality that it may have been misused.

The latest move comes in wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal in which the data consultancy company stole personal information of more than 87 million Facebook users for use during Donald Trump’s 2016 election campaign.

After the scandal came into light, the social networking giant began an app auditing process that checks every app integrated with it to ensure that it didn’t mishandle or share the personal data that it gathered, in violation of the company’s policies.

According to the blog post, Facebook has investigated thousands of apps since March and deactivated a total of 400 of those apps. The company also mentioned the recent changes made to its data sharing policies, which include cutting off data access for any app that users haven’t used for 90 days.

Through the blog post, Facebook assured that it will continue to investigate apps and make the necessary changes to make sure that user’s information doesn’t get comprised in any way.

Caroline Finnegan

A professionnal journalist for the past ten years, I cover global news and economic affairs for The Chief Observer.

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