Facebook’s New Privacy Control Policy!!!

March 20, 2008

Social Network Facebook is now even more serious on user’s privacy matter. Most importantly is their latest privacy control where Facebook users now able to control their profile whatever they want to visible to their friend list.

Last Wednesday, Facebook has released different types of privacy controls for their users and received significant amount of positive responds. Now users can create their profile in such a way where friends can view specific details in their own profile by using new privacy settings. On the other hand, users can keep their specific information by locking profile to their friends, friends of friends, or even particular individuals.

Matt Cohler, vice president for product management at Facebook, said it was seeking to evolve beyond the simple privacy controls originally aimed at relatively homogenous groups of college-age users. He also said,

“We have a lot more users, a lot more types of users, a lot more relationships; we have a lot more types of relationships”

However, the use of Facebook is growing very rapidly over the past year and a half. Two-thirds of its users are outside the United States, compared with about 10 percent 18 months ago, when most members were student age and in the United States. Facebook users now can select other types of strangers to view their profile. Facebook has designed privacy controls for college/university students where a university graduate student can create their profile just for other graduate students which just allow graduate students to view or access their profiles, along with staff and professors are not able to view their profiles.

But given the previous example, I was just wondering will it be work perfectly if a professor log in Facebook , and change his or her own status to an undergrad student. Suppose if someone change his/her status at university from professor/alumni to a graduate student. I think Facebook system will not restrict it to do this because Facebook does not have any verifying tools for that.

Finally, there is no doubt that it is a security flaw in Facebook’s according to the new privacy control policies. So I think it is not enough yet and too much to fix up in privacy matter. Especially, Facebook must focus on status control system. They should work on it to verified user’s status otherwise a graduate student will easily become a professor or a professor easily can change their status to a grad student.

–Romiz

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