Facebook has been criticized for their privacy violations for several years. In the United States, they may be investigated by the FTC for stealing user data and selling it to advertisers. Recently, the situation has become even more insulting for the users who have already been exploited. Facebook actually was given an award after a hacker stole login information on users.
Who were the real victims?
Personally, I am offended that Facebook gets 360 million dollars while the actual victims never got to see a dime. They could have sued this hacker like Facebook did, but any lawsuit they were awarded probably wouldn’t even have covered their legal costs. All of these users together probably wouldn’t have been given a fraction of $360 million.
What were the damages?
What effect did this really have on Facebook? These users are probably going to reactivate their accounts anyways now that the hacker is in custody. I can’t see what the long-term damages were. Secondly, how many of those 4,500 people would actually have clicked on a Facebook ad? One percent of them? How much money would Facebook have received?
Of the 116,000 users with compromised accounts, only about 4,500 of them actually canceled their accounts. I cannot understand how 4,500 people canceling their accounts could be worth nearly $400 million.
Let’s ponder the finances for a moment. Facebook allegedly made $2 billion in revenue last year. They have close to 800 million users. That means each person is worth about $3 to them. You can argue damages to public relations was an expense that needed to be taken into consideration. But maybe those public relations were deserved, which brings me to my biggest point.
How well does Facebook protect our privacy?
Facebook has not even pretended to make an effort to protect our privacy. With almost a billion people around the world, Facebook can’t even attempt to come up with a better method of securing our data? One hacker with a few automated scripts can login to people’s accounts this easily and exploit their most sensitive information? If anything, they deserve more bad PR until they get this straightened out.
This was a serious injustice. Granted, these users could also have sued for the breaches of privacy, but they clearly don’t have the legal resources Facebook did. They were the real victims and they should have been given a settlement whether they raised a lawsuit or not.