Be aware that Facebook maybe storing your SMSs & phone contacts

Well we all know that Facebook stores a huge amount of data about you. They use it to make money among other things. You give Facebook the right to collect, store, share and manipulate this data to suit their needs.

But as a BBC journalist recently realised, what they collect can surprise and even alarm you. What they found was that Facebook was collecting all their Phone’s contact database.

From their article (I will supply the link after this) is this, I feel scarey, detail:

"But then I clicked on a file called contacts. I was taken aback to find my entire contact list, thousands of phone numbers. Now this was not limited to Facebook friends and included many people in the public eye who might be disturbed to find that their private numbers were stored in this way.

I cannot remember what happened when I set up my Facebook account back in 2007 - in those naive days I could well have clicked yes when invited to upload my contacts so that I could see who else was part of this new young community. So, my fault I suppose.

Then I noticed that at the top of the list were some numbers that cannot have been sucked into the Facebook machine a decade ago because I had only added them in recent weeks. They included, ironically, the mobile number of Carole Cadwalladr, the journalist who has blown open the whole story of Cambridge Analytica and Facebook.

So this means that every time I enter a new number into my phone’s database, it somehow ends up with Facebook - the company is in effect monitoring me."

To read the full article go here:

For another article that references the one above see:

Is it time to cull or control your Facebook account?

Did you realise what you signed up for?

Have you ever checked what they store about you (the infopackets’ article explains the steps to check it). Maybe it’s time to do so?

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Thanks for the links. My account was recently closed down by FB because I refused to give them photographic proof of my ID. So I had a recent backup of by former FB account. This made the process of looking at the list of contacts easy.

I may have granted access when I first started FB, but very soon I closed my privacy right down. To the best of my knowledge, FB hasn’t had access to my contacts for over five years. In fact I remember recently getting messages from FB telling me how much better it would be for me if FB was given access to all my contacts; so I was confident FB was excluded.

Going to my contacts list, I didn’t expect there to be anything there.

OMG!!! There were about 500 entries on the contact list, many with multiple phone number or email addresses. The list included very old contacts right up to more recent contacts. How had FB done this when I had denied permission?

Are all those privacy controls just a sham?

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For the Android version of Facebook, these are the permissions one grants Facebook (exact copy of permissions from Google Play including duplicate entries).

This app has access to:
Device & app history

  • retrieve running apps
    Identity
  • find accounts on the device
  • add or remove accounts
  • read your own contact card
    Calendar
  • read calendar events plus confidential information
  • add or modify calendar events and send email to guests without owners’ knowledge
    Contacts
  • find accounts on the device
  • read your contacts
  • modify your contacts
    Location
  • approximate location (network-based)
  • precise location (GPS and network-based)
  • SMS
  • read your text messages (SMS or MMS)
    Phone
  • read phone status and identity
  • Photos/Media/Files
  • read the contents of your USB storage
  • modify or delete the contents of your USB storage
    Storage
  • read the contents of your USB storage
  • modify or delete the contents of your USB storage
    Camera
  • take pictures and videos
    Microphone
  • record audio
    Wi-Fi connection information
  • view Wi-Fi connections
    Device ID & call information
  • read phone status and identity
    Identity
  • find accounts on the device
    Contacts
  • find accounts on the device
    Phone
  • directly call phone numbers
  • read phone status and identity
    Phone
  • read call log
  • read phone status and identity
  • write call log
    Phone
  • directly call phone numbers
  • read call log
  • read phone status and identity
  • write call log
    Location
  • precise location (GPS and network-based)
    Identity
  • find accounts on the device
  • add or remove accounts
    Photos/Media/Files
  • modify or delete the contents of your USB storage
    Storage
  • modify or delete the contents of your USB storage
    Other
  • download files without notification
  • receive data from Internet
  • adjust your wallpaper size
  • view network connections
  • create accounts and set passwords
  • read battery statistics
  • pair with Bluetooth devices
  • access Bluetooth settings
  • send sticky broadcast
  • change network connectivity
  • connect and disconnect from Wi-Fi
  • full network access
  • change your audio settings
  • read sync settings
  • run at startup
  • draw over other apps
  • control vibration
  • prevent device from sleeping
  • modify system settings
  • toggle sync on and off
  • install shortcuts
  • read Google service configuration
  • view network connections
  • full network access
  • view network connections
  • create accounts and set passwords
  • read battery statistics
  • send sticky broadcast
  • change network connectivity
  • connect and disconnect from Wi-Fi
  • full network access
  • read sync settings
  • run at startup
  • draw over other apps
  • control vibration
  • prevent device from sleeping
  • toggle sync on and off
  • install shortcuts
  • read Google service configuration
  • view network connections
  • create accounts and set passwords
  • read battery statistics
  • send sticky broadcast
  • change network connectivity
  • connect and disconnect from Wi-Fi
  • expand/collapse status bar
  • full network access
  • change your audio settings
  • read sync settings
  • run at startup
  • reorder running apps
  • set wallpaper
  • draw over other apps
  • control vibration
  • prevent device from sleeping
  • toggle sync on and off
  • install shortcuts
  • read Google service configuration
  • view network connections
  • create accounts and set passwords
  • read battery statistics
  • send sticky broadcast
  • change network connectivity
  • connect and disconnect from Wi-Fi
  • full network access
  • change your audio settings
  • read sync settings
  • run at startup
  • draw over other apps
  • control vibration
  • prevent device from sleeping
  • toggle sync on and off
  • install shortcuts
  • read Google service configuration
  • view network connections
  • create accounts and set passwords
  • send sticky broadcast
  • change network connectivity
  • connect and disconnect from Wi-Fi
  • full network access
  • read sync settings
  • control vibration
  • prevent device from sleeping
  • toggle sync on and off
  • install shortcuts
  • read Google service configuration
  • view network connections
  • create accounts and set passwords
  • read battery statistics
  • send sticky broadcast
  • change network connectivity
  • connect and disconnect from Wi-Fi
  • expand/collapse status bar
  • full network access
  • change your audio settings
  • read sync settings
  • run at startup
  • reorder running apps
  • set wallpaper
  • draw over other apps
  • control vibration
  • prevent device from sleeping
  • toggle sync on and off
  • install shortcuts
  • view network connections
  • create accounts and set passwords
  • send sticky broadcast
  • change network connectivity
  • connect and disconnect from Wi-Fi
  • full network access
  • change your audio settings
  • read sync settings
  • control vibration
  • prevent device from sleeping
  • toggle sync on and off
  • install shortcuts
  • view network connections
  • create accounts and set passwords
  • send sticky broadcast
  • change network connectivity
  • connect and disconnect from Wi-Fi
  • full network access
  • read sync settings
  • control vibration
  • prevent device from sleeping
  • toggle sync on and off
  • install shortcuts
  • view network connections
  • full network access
  • control vibration
  • prevent device from sleeping
  • view network connections
  • create accounts and set passwords
  • full network access
  • read sync settings
  • control vibration
  • prevent device from sleeping
  • toggle sync on and off
  • install shortcuts

There are not too many (well none) other permissions I can think on on a phone which could be handed over to Facebook. The above makes me think who is actually in full control of their phone.

Disclamier: I am not on Facebook.

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Yes the list is very long and shows the concerning depth of data being mined and controlled by the app. I do though point out some entries are repeated such as “full network access”. Once you have granted “full network access” it is the same for all sections of the permissions granted.

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It looks like one could spend their annual leave just trolling through the settings :open_mouth:

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Just started a new FB profile up.

What I found is that Messenger by default goes to your contacts. It comes up with a message window to say something like ‘Messenger is accessing your contacts, and will continue to do so’. It prevents you from continuing, and there is no immediate option to prevent it. You have to hit the ‘learn more’ option, and then ‘not now’. There is not a :stop_sign: ‘I don’t want this (not now, not ever)’ option. So I wonder how many people allowed it, just so they could move to the next screen to send their message.

Of course, if Messenger has access, so does FaceBook.

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With all the fuss about Facebook in the media at the moment, I was struck that a guy I follow who blogs about the use of language had the best analysis I’ve seen: https://withoutbullshit.com/blog/nothing-significant-will-change-at-facebook

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I’m not a FB user (I’m sure they have all my details by whatever devious means!), but I see Mozilla has come up with Facebook Container Extension for Firefox.

https://blog.mozilla.org/firefox/facebook-container-extension

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Facebook is of course not the only app that will do this.

  • LinkedIn appears to have access to my contacts, although I have repeatedly explicitly denied it such access (and on checking my phone have denied it all access it requested - including calendar, camera, contacts, location, microphone and storage)!
  • Twitter is similarly greedy when it comes to collecting data from its users.
  • Anyone who uses Uber should uninstall the app until they need it, and then uninstall it immediately afterwards.

We are the product.

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I noticed this also - about the same time I installed the mobile app - same deal as faceplant I guess … once they have snaffled them, they seem hesitant to let them go, not surprisingly …

Isn’t it good to feel special? just like the other 7 or so billion people on this rock - and all the corporations want is the quickest vector to our wallet …

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That revelation is as mind boggling a surprise as the ACCC report on the communications sector, that also states the obvious :smiley:

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As the young would say: “well DUHHHH”.

For years there have been multitudinous warnings about not disclosing personal information.

Even if you didn’t disclose, FB has been nefariously (often contrary to users’ wishes) scraping and selling information for years, and now they are upset that someone else mined their product without giving them a cut of the profits.

Zuckerberg is not saying he is sorry about data mining, he says he is sorry that FB let others get the data.

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Excuse my cynicism. It sounds good, but after they finish playing pass the responsibility parcel; and then the who’s going to take action parcel; what could they possible do against FB or Zuckerberg? Any fine will be less than daily petty cash.

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More likely a written agreement for FB to consider whether they can improve things, end of outcome.

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There seems little doubt that Mohammed will always go to the sugarmountain …

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An article regarding Zuckerberg expecting a huge backlash over Facebook’s ‘new approach’.

I don’t quite follow this part.

“The company has come under fire for allowing politicians to lie in ads, at a time when Twitter has decided to ban political advertising altogether.”

Everyone already knows when politicians are lying. You can see their lips moving.

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Facebook accused of blocking attempts to fight child exploitation.

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