‘T&T Facebook users beware’

Stephen King, CEO, Ixanos, is advising T&T nationals to be cautious while they use Facebook and other forms of social media.

“No users are protected with respect to Facebook. If you look at the terms and conditions of use, users of Facebook have given up a lot of their rights, privacy included. If people are worried about privacy, Facebook is the last thing they should be using,” he said.

King said he has examined Facebook’s terms and conditions as his company has done several mobile applications.

“At Ixanos we have realised how much people have given away. We try to limit what our applications actually utilise on the phones,” he said.

King’s comments came as Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg apologised for weaknesses in the social network’s policies that enabled an App to gain access to the personal information of 50 million users without their consent. He outlined steps to protect user data and said companies have a responsibility to act.

This is the aftermath of the Cambridge Analytica privacy debacle over reports it swiped the data of more than 50 million Facebook users to sway elections.

In what has become one of the worst backlashes Facebook has ever seen, politicians in the US and Britain have called for Zuckerberg to explain its data practices in detail. State attorneys general in Massachusetts, New York and New Jersey have opened investigations into the Cambridge mess. And some have rallied to a movement that urges people to delete their Facebook accounts entirely.

King’s company, Ixanos, states on its website that it is a local company which strives to provide professional technology engineering and software services and apply new technology, knowledge and expertise to build the business, utility and industry infrastructure of T&T.

He said the user term and conditions of Facebook are wide open.

“People have given permission for Facebook to practically do anything. On top of that, people put their own personal information on the website. They have left themselves wide open so that the system can in fact utilise their phone, their contacts, their pictures, even who they call. People have already given up their rights as soon as they have put on messenger,” he said.

He said local small business are limited in how they can protect their businesses.

King urged social media users to protect themselves from online “predators.”

“These predators can quickly find out where I live, where you live. It is not difficult to find on Facebook where people’s children go to school and who their friends are. That would not take you an hour to do.

People do not think about predators at all until it happens,” he said.