Facebook Data Dump: It has really been a terrible week for Facebook these past few days. The social media giant recently got caught up in a data privacy scandal that is linked with a data analytics firm known as Cambridge Analytical (CA). Ever since users got to know about the scandal, some users have been looking for ways to remove their data from the social media network and thereby bringing up the #DeleteFacebook online campaign.
A tweet by a software developer known as Dylan Mckay suggests an interesting revelation whereby Facebook has access to call history details of Mckay’s conversations with his partner’s mother. Adding to that, Facebook seems to have all the historical records of contacts (even those that were deleted), metadata of cellular call logs, and metadata of text messages.
Notably, he was making use of an Android phone during November 2016 and July 2017 when this data breach incident occurred.
Here is how to download your Facebook History Account Data
To view the history of all your Facebook account’s data
1. Log in to your Facebook account via facebook.com through a desktop browser.
2. Click on the drop-down icon at the top right corner of the page and select “Settings”
3. In the General tab section, you will see an option that says “download a copy of your Facebook data”. Click on that, and immediately Facebook will prompt you to re-enter your Facebook password. After entering your password, an email containing a zip file will be sent to the email you used in registering your Facebook account.
The file size of the sent mail can vary depending on the activity frequency and the age of your Facebook profile. In my own case, the size was a massive 1.6GB.
Advertisers Extracting Data From Your Facebook Profile
The ZIP file which you have downloaded contains an HTML folder, there is a page titled ‘ads.html’. In this file, you can find a list of all the “Advertisers with your contact info” buried at the bottom of the HTML page.
The zip file also contains the list of all the third-party apps that you’ve installed or linked to your Facebook account. It also has the list of IP addresses which you’ve logged in from, email addresses, contact numbers of all your friends which you’ve added and also the pages that you liked; even all your phonebook contacts from your Android device that you’ve used to log in to your Facebook account.
It also contains metadata on Facebook events, messages, your friend list, places you’ve checked into, videos you have uploaded or been tagged in, and also all the likes and pokes you’ve made from the beginning.
The zip file actually contains a lot, you just need to check it out yourself.
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