On March 17 – 18, 2018, the Guardian, the New York Times, and Britain’s Channel Four published stories detailing how Cambridge Analytica employed a third-party researcher to harvest 50 million Facebook users’ profiles for use in political campaigns without the consent of the users. Below we’ve compiled links to those stories, public reaction to the news, and provided information and links about privacy self defense. (Last updated on March 22 at 10:30 pm Central).
Initial News Stories and Investigative Reports:
How Trump Consultants Exploited the Facebook Data of Millions | New York Times
Whistleblower reveals to Channel 4 News data grab of 50 million Facebook profiles by Cambridge Analytica |Channel4News (United Kingdom)
Facebook has suspended Cambridge Analytica, the data analytics firm that helped Donald Trump get elected| ReCode
Cambridge Analytica used Facebook data it promised Facebook it had deleted, the company claims.
Legislative and Regulatory Response
Facebook’s Role in Data Misuse Sets Off Storms on Two Continents | New York Times
Facebook Faces Growing Pressure Over Data and Privacy Inquiries | New York Times
Facebook investors sue the social media giant over voter-profile harvesting | Los Angeles Times
Zuckerberg, Facing Facebook’s Worst Crisis Yet, Pledges Better Privacy | The New York Times
Mark Zuckerberg’s Reckoning: ‘This Is a Major Trust Issue’ | The New York Times
Mark Zuckerberg says Facebook will audit thousands of apps after ‘breach of trust’ | The Washington Post
For Many Facebook Users, a ‘Last Straw’ That Led Them to Quit | The New York Times
Next Worry for Facebook: Disenchanted Users | Wall Street Journal
News Updates after 3/18/2018
Alex Stamos, Facebook Data Security Chief, To Leave Amid Outcry | New York Times
Cambridge Analytica Suspends C.E.O. Amid Facebook Data Scandal | New York Times
Analysis and Opinion
Facebook Ignites Debate Over Third-Party Access to User Data | Wall Street Journal
Cambridge Analytica, Facebook, and the Revelations of Open Secrets | The New Yorker
Facebook Owes You More Than This | Wired
Facebook’s Surveillance Machine | New York Times
What Took Facebook So Long? | The Atlantic
What privacy pros can learn from the Facebook-Cambridge Analytica revelations | International Association of Privacy Professionals
Cambridge Analytica case highlights Facebook’s data riches | Financial Times
The Cambridge Analytica affair reveals Facebook’s “Transparency Paradox” | MIT Technology Review
Old Facebook got away with murder, New Facebook not so much | Columbia Journalism Review
Yet Another Lesson from the Cambridge Analytica Fiasco: Remove the Barriers to User Privacy Control | Electronic Frontier Foundation/Cory Doctorow
Facebook’s rules for accessing user data lured more than just Cambridge Analytica | The Washington Post
Silicon Valley Has Failed to Protect Our Data. Here’s How to Fix It | Bloomberg News
Cambridge Analytica and Our Lives Inside the Surveillance Machine | The New Yorker
Mark Zuckerberg’s Trust Problem | Wired
The Problem with #DeleteFacebook | Slate
Don’t Delete Facebook, Regulate It | The Nation
Tools to Protect User Privacy | Choose Privacy Week
How To Change Your Facebook Settings To Opt Out of Platform API Sharing | Electronic Frontier Foundation
How to manipulate Facebook and Twitter instead of letting them manipulate you | MIT Technology Review
How to Protect Yourself (and Your Friends) on Facebook | New York Times
Facebook is experimenting on you. Here’s how you can run an experiment on it. | The Washington Post
How to Quickly Delete Lots of Old Facebook Posts | How-To Geek
Make A Giant Leap for Patron Privacy: Prepare for CPW2018 with A Free Webinar on Library Privacy Audits
Is your library preparing to observe Choose Privacy Week 2018? Join Erin Berman and Julie Oborny of the San José Public Library for a free webinar that outlines the first steps libraries can take to implement up-to-date privacy policies and procedures.
The webinar “A Practical Guide to Privacy Audits” will include a discussion about why healthy privacy practices are more critical for libraries than ever before and offers a step-by-step guide for starting a privacy audit at your library.
The webinar will take place on Monday, April 16, 2018 at 1:30 p.m. Eastern/12:30 p.m. Central/11:30 a.m. Mountain/10:30 a.m. Pacific.
Choose Privacy Week (May 1-8) is the American Library Association’s annual, week-long event that promotes the importance of individual privacy rights and celebrates libraries and librarians’ unique role in protecting privacy in the library and in society as a whole. For more information on Choose Privacy Week, visit chooseprivacyweek.org.
Julie Oborny is a web librarian for San José Public Library (SJPL), where she focuses on analyzing, designing, and developing the library’s online experiences. As an advocate for privacy, intellectual freedom, and technology literacy, she valued the opportunity to work on the design and development team for the award-winning Virtual Privacy Lab — a free resource that helps people optimize their online privacy. Julie authored a chapter about social network sites, surveillance, and RFID in Protecting Patron Privacy: A LITA Guide. She also participated in SJPL’s privacy audit.
Erin Berman is the Innovations Manager for the San José Public Library. She was an American Library Association’s Emerging Leader in the class of 2014, was named one of Library Journal’s Movers and Shakers in 2016 and is currently a California Library Association at-large board member. Her work in the library field has mainly focused on technology literacy, leading projects such as the Virtual Privacy Lab, the Maker[Space]Ship, and most recently, an internal privacy audit.
The ALA Intellectual Freedom Committee’s Privacy Subcommittee monitors ongoing privacy developments in libraries, including technology, politics, legislation, and social trends. It proposes actions to ALA’s Intellectual Freedom Committee that promote best policies and practices for library users’ privacy and generally defend and protect the privacy of library users, librarians, and the public.
The ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom is charged with implementing ALA policies concerning the concept of intellectual freedom as embodied in the Library Bill of Rights and with educating librarians and the public about the nature and importance of intellectual freedom in libraries. OIF supports the work of the Intellectual Freedom Committee and its Privacy Subcommittee. For more information, visit ala.org/oif.
Privacy for Whom? | The New Inquiry
Two new books show that for the poor, privacy has never been on offer.
- Must Tech Firms Provide Data Held Abroad? Justices Struggle to Apply 1986 Law | New York Times
- Supreme Court Skeptical of Microsoft’s Ireland E-Mail Privacy Claims | Scientific American
- Court Seems Unconvinced Of Microsoft’s Argument To Shield Email Data Stored Overseas | NPR
- Microsoft argues data privacy case is one for Congress to decide | CNN
Student Privacy/Libraries and Privacy
We can, but should we? When trends challenge our professional values | American Libraries
Privacy Tip #128 – Basic Smartphone Settings to Thwart Hackers | Data Privacy & Security Insider
Encryption and Security
Law and Regulation
Bill seeking to protect consumers from Equifax-like data breach passes Unicameral | WJAG / Norfolk (NE)
This Week in Data Breaches
Data breach may have put Pa. teachers’ personal information at risk | PennLive/Patriot-News (Harrisburg, PA)
Stolen laptop compromises data of Houston’s health plan | Health Data Management