Facebook is a Surveillance Company Disguised as Social Media: Edward Snowden

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Former CIA employee and NSA contractor, Edward Snowden, best known for leaking classified documents about illegal worldwide surveillance program named PRISM back in 2013, recently took to Twitter to share his opinions about ‘social media’ platforms like Facebook and Twitter.

In his tweet, Snowden compared Facebook to a surveillance company which harvested and sold detailed information about users’ private lives disguised as a social media platform. Snowden said:

“Businesses that make money by collecting and selling detailed records of private lives were once plainly described as “surveillance companies.” Their rebranding as “social media” is the most successful deception since the Department of War became the Department of Defense.”

The statement came shortly after the social media giant suspended Cambridge Analytica, a data analytics firm which worked for President Trump’s campaign. Facebook has accused the firm of deleting data it had improperly harvested from users, but Snowden believes that Facebook is at fault and he even lumped other social media platforms for being just as reckless with users’ private information.

However, this isn’t all that Snowden had to say about Facebook and other social media platforms. Earlier that day Snowden also said that “Facebook makes their money by exploiting and selling intimate details about the private lives of millions, far beyond the scant details you voluntarily post. They are not victims. They are accomplices.”

In response to the allegations levied against the firm, Cambridge Analytica denied any wrongdoing and claimed that it “fully complies” with Facebook’s terms of service. Due to the mishap and the following public outrage, US lawmaker Sen. Amy Klobuchar has called upon Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg to testify before the state judiciary committee.

Facebook has been under constant scrutiny in the recent past and the platform has been heavily criticized for spreading fake news and playing a major role in swaying the US Presidential elections. More recently, Facebook-owned Bolt App Lock was criticized for monitoring users’ mobile activity as it breached their privacy.

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