How to avoid Facebook data traps

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Facebook is under fire after reports detailing how Cambridge Analytica, which is credited with helping Donald Trump win the U.S. election, acquired and used Facebook's customer information.

The social media giant's shares were down 5.36 per cent at $175.17 at the time of writing, slashing almost $4bn (£2.8bn) off of founder Mark Zuckerberg's fortune.

Disturbing undercover interviews with executives from United Kingdom -based political research firm Cambridge Analytica have revealed admissions of bribery, entrapment and the use of sex workers to sway political elections around the world, according to an investigative series airing Monday.

Facebook says that it removed Kogan's app and demanded the data be destroyed in 2015 when the company learned that user information had been passed along to political operatives. The company has said University of Cambridge psychology professor Aleksandr Kogan accessed the information after he requested it from users who gave their consent when they chose to sign up for his test via his Facebook app.

In addition to mining data from Facebook, Nix and managing director of Cambridge Analytica's political division, Mark Turnbull, spoke of bribery stings, honey traps and spying with the help of ex-spies from Britain and Israel. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, at a Republican presidential primary debate at Fox Theatre in Detroit, Michigan, Thursday, March 3, 2016.

Cambridge Analytica elaborated in a statement, saying that it had posed a series of "ludicrous hypothetical scenarios" to determine whether the client was someone they should engage with.

The New York Times first reported his departure from the company.

It has come to the point where founder Mark Zuckerberg will have to prove somehow that he is not in way over his head.

But as of Monday afternoon, the most recent public post on Zuckerberg's profile is from two weeks ago, when he and his wife Priscilla Chan celebrated Purim.

Cambridge denies keeping data from Kogan's work.

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"If this data still exists, it would be a grave violation of Facebook's policies and an unacceptable violation of trust and the commitments these groups made".

Now, both American and European Union lawmakers are calling for an investigation into whether data misuse took place on Facebook's part.

The data was taken from 50 million Facebook users back in 2014 through a sneaky method: a quiz app called "thisisyourdigitallife", which was billed as a personality quiz, but which actually gathered data on people who used the app and their Facebook friends. The firm's so-called psychographic modeling underpinned its work for the Trump campaign in 2016, though many have questioned the effectiveness of its techniques.

In an interview Monday on NBC's "Today", Wylie said Cambridge Analytica aimed to "explore mental vulnerabilities of people".

On Wall Street, Facebook shares skidded 7.7 per cent in midday trade amid concerns about pressure for new regulations that could hurt its business model.

The company is accused of failing to properly inform users that their profile information may have been obtained and kept by Cambridge Analytica.

Facebook data was sought to... It has ties to Steve Bannon, the former campaign adviser to Trump, whose campaign spent at least $6 million on the firm's services during the 2016 presidential race.

"Facebook and Google will have to ask users a lot more permission to track them", Carroll said.

Even on mainstay issues such as gun rights, Cambridge CEO Alexander Nix said at the time, the firm used personality types to tailor its messages.