Here’s how to check if your Facebook data was shared with Cambridge Analytica

Facebook has provided a link where you can check if you (or your friends) shared your Facebook data with Cambridge Analytica.

Apparently, mine has not.

Interestingly, one of the biggest misconceptions over the Cambridge Analytica scandal is that there was some sort of “leak” of data from Facebook. This couldn’t be further from the truth.

What occured is that Cambridge Analytica created a Facebook app – thisisyourdigitallife – that asked people questions where they willingly handed over their data (after providing informed consent). Pre-2015, these people also gave consent for this third-party app to see what their Facebook friends were doing also.

Given that the average person has approximately 130 Facebook friends, if 270,000 people used this app, then it stands to reason that Cambridge Analytica has data on more than 35m people. There are some reports that this figure is much higher, around 87m people.

Either way, as I wrote in this piece covering what Facebook and Google knows about you, if the product is free, you’re the product.

Constantine Frantzeskos

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