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Facebook’s promised clear history feature still doesn’t exist

If you’re tired of censorship and surveillance, subscribe to Reclaim The Net.

Facebook failed to keep up the promise of clearing all the history containing private information of its users. Last year, at the F8 conference, Zuckerberg promised to integrate a “Clear History” feature that allows Facebook users to wipe out any non-consensual data about them that was compiled by Facebook.

After being riddled with several privacy invasions such as the Cambridge Analytica scandal, Zuckerberg pledged to integrate this feature and help make Facebook more private. A year has passed since this feature was promised and there seems to be no sign of any “Clear History” feature.

This isn’t the first time that Facebook has defaulted on one of its promises to users. Previously, Zuckerberg announced through a blog post about his plan to offer a parallel set of services on Facebook that will be user-friendly and will have all the overdue privacy protection measures. Despite not offering a privacy-enhancing feature for its users, here’s what Facebook managed to “accomplish” since 2018:

  1. 14 million users had their post settings changed to “public” without their consent. Facebook ended up blaming a bug for this incident.
  2. WSJ reported about Facebook’s efforts to access card transaction and account balances of users for targeting their advertising better.
  3.  30 million accounts were compromised by hackers who exploited the “View As” function of Facebook.
  4.  The phone numbers submitted for enabling two-factor authentication have been used for targeting advertisements to you.
  5.  A bug in the Facebook app lets the app developers see the photos you have uploaded on Facebook but haven’t posted.
  6. A recent NY Times investigation revealed that all the private conversations on Facebook were being shared with its partners.
  7. Facebook revealed that it stored the passwords of millions of users in un-encrypted plain text on its servers.
  8. Two caches of user data, one of which contained 540 million records were found on Amazon cloud server. This data was uploaded by a third-party company that took this data from Facebook.

Instead of fulfilling the promise to make a private and secure Facebook possible, Zuckerberg and his team have made matters worse. Lack of privacy, negligence, poor security measures and defaulting on promises are an indirect effect of monopoly. Facebook’s monopoly in the realm of social networking has given it the freedom to be rogue.

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