Facebook to Require Verified Identities for Future Political Ads

Henrietta Brewer
April 7, 2018

The site will now show who pays for all political and issue-based ads and require advertisers to be more transparent about who and where they are.

According to multiple reports, Facebook sent a doctor to several USA hospitals in the hopes of convincing them to share patient data with the social media giant.

The Italian competition authority Antitrust said on Friday it had opened an investigation into Facebook for "alleged improper commercial practices" by not adequately informing users about data-gathering.

"These steps by themselves won't stop all people trying to game the system", the Facebook chief said. "But they will make it a lot harder for anyone to do what the Russians did during the 2016 election and use fake accounts and pages to run ads", Zuckerberg said in a Facebook post announcing the changes.

Facebook says it began erasing the messages of Zuckerberg and a few other top executives in 2014 after computer hackers obtained and released emails from Sony Pictures executives.

A figurine is seen in front of the Facebook logo.

Facebook's latest move comes a month after Elizabeth Denham, the United Kingdom information commissioner, suggested social networks may be forced to reveal detailed information about how and why users were targeted for political advertising. Data is frequently shared and sold between massive data brokers, and requesting that you be deleted from one of them means it's only a matter of time until your information gets shared by another. We should have done this sooner - and we're sorry that we did not.

Facebook Inc. officials will be traveling-or at least making phone calls-to Europe to respond to concerns that the data of as many as 2.7 million people in the European Union might have been shared with a consulting firm that worked on Donald Trump's USA presidential campaign.

"When we received word that this researcher gave the data to Cambridge Analytica, they assured us it was deleted", she said.

However in a subsequent interview with NPR, Sandberg said that in reality Facebook made money by selling access to its membership, and she said it was just like the way radio and television stations made money from advertising.

It also more directly addresses the misinformation tactics of the Russian "troll farm", the Internet Research Agency, which was disclosed previous year to have bought a number of Facebook adverts in an attempt to sway the United States election.

The firestorm over the improper data shared has sparked calls for investigations on both sides of the Atlantic. A proactive approach to privacy, however, could act as a start to regaining many users' trust with the service.

"People want accurate information on Facebook, and we want them to have accurate information on Facebook", said Sandberg.

The EU justice commissioner Vera Jourova will hold phone talks with Facebook's Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg to discuss what the company is doing to address the breach, which it says may have affected 87 million people around the world.

Facebook is also investing in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and adding more people to help find advertisers that should have gone through the authorisation process but did not. "This story is too important, too shocking, to treat it as business as usual".

The company is facing a global backlash over the improper sharing of data.

Other reports by iNewsToday