In the wake of the global elections, social media giant Facebook has announced that it has restricted it’s the external agencies from accessing its database of political ads. The decision has been taken by the Facebook at the time when more than one third of the world’s population is set to vote during the election taking place in 2019.
As per the new update and press release released by the Facebook Inc., the new update will restrict the external users, companies and organizations from having access to its political ads on its platform. The new update will also help the company to control the new plugins, apps and external tools and how they access the user’s information.
Facebook Political Ad Collector is a database, operated by ProPublica which displays information about more than 1,20,000 political ads; courtesy of over 22,000 users who have installed and used the plugin.
“Efforts to fix it has proved much harder than before, as our software stopped working, ten days ago,” reported Sam Jeffers, co-founder of WhoTargetsMe. Chances were that Facebook would lock out this service altogether he added further.
Following the block on Twitter when ProPublica posted a story, Rob Leathern, Director of Product at Facebook replied, “This isn’t about stopping publications from holding us accountable or making ads less transparent, the company’s priority is to prevent user data from being misused he added. Plugins that scrape ads can expose people’s info if misused”, he stated further.
Facebook has burnt its hand in the Cambridge Analytica scandal wherein Cambridge Analytica misused user data over 50 million users, Notably. After the news scandal broke out, Mark Zuckerberg, CEO and founder of Facebook had to testify in front of the US Congress and even in the UK Parliament.
To defend against foreign interference ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha polls in India and to increase ad transparency, the company announced to take-these additional steps.