Opinion: Is it time to delete Facebook account? | Opinion | ABnews24

Sun, September 23, 2018
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Opinion: Is it time to delete Facebook account?
Sonya Bateson: Ever since the news broke that a political consulting firm had gained access to millions of users' Facebook data, people have been threatening to delete their Facebook accounts.
 
Cambridge Analytica used personal information harvested from more than 50 million Facebook profiles - without permission - to build a system to target American voters with personalised political advertisements, former Cambridge Analytica contractor Christopher Wylie told the Guardian.
 
The thing that scared the masses about this was that the firm was able to collect people's data without their permission through their Facebook friends.
 
The internet can be a scary place. It's true what they say that you can never truly remove anything from the internet.
 
But when most people think of this rule, they're generally thinking of teenagers sending nudes, not filling out innocuous answers to a fun quiz (which Disney villain matches your personality?) or joining a mailing list (subscribe now and be in to win a shopping trip for two).
 
Ever noticed that when you Google search something, you soon see ads for related products? That's not a fluke.
 
It's just the latest way companies are mining our data. A decade or two ago, companies were using loyalty cards and rewards programmes to discover what we were buying.
 
Today, it's the same thing, just far more sophisticated.
 
The only way to avoid it completely is to make sure you never have an internet presence.
 
Unless you're a hermit living in the wop wops, this is next to impossible.
 
I don't like that companies know everything about me, but I can go into it with my eyes open knowing companies and organisations are trying to manipulate me.
 
Deleting Facebook won't remove this risk, it will just eliminate one of the many avenues from which our data can be accessed.
 
And, let's face it, I need my daily dose of puppy photos.
 
Sonya is the head of news at the Bay of Plenty Times.
 
Source: Bay of Plenty Times
 
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