Privacy groups bring Facebook complaints to FTC

The groups call Facebook's recent privacy changes 'unfair and deceptive'

Ten privacy and consumer groups, including the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC), filed a complaint Thursday with the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, saying that Facebook's newly revamped privacy settings are deceptive and unfair.

Facebook unveiled the new privacy settings last week, saying that they were giving users more granular control over their settings, but critics immediately jumped on the fact that Facebook's new default settings push information that may previously have been semi-private onto the Internet and they now give users no way to block their friends' Facebook applications from accessing personal data.

"Facebook is engaging in unfair and deceptive acts and practices," that are "likely to cause substantial injury to consumers," says the complaint (PDF), which was posted to EPIC's Web site Thursday.

In an e-mailed response to the complaint, a Facebook spokesman said the company was "disappointed that EPIC has chosen to share their concerns with the FTC while refusing to talk to us about them." Facebook discussed these changes with regulators, including the FTC prior to going live with them.

Since the changes went live on Dec. 9, Facebook has made some adjustments. The company now gives users a way to prevent their list of friends from being publicly available.

Among those who signed the complaint are the American Library Association, the Center for Digital Democracy, the Consumer Federation of America, and the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags privacyFacebooklegalUSA governmentftc

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Robert McMillan

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Father’s Day Gift Guide

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?