Facebook announced to participate in the Data Transfer Project, a collaboration of organisations, including Google, Microsoft and Twitter, committed to building a common way for people to transfer data into and out of online services. The key here is to make it easy for consumers to switch services, thereby promoting choice and competition online.
According to Facebook, people use different types of services and they require unique privacy controls and settings. For example, you might use an app where you share photos publicly, a social networking app where you share updates with friends, and a fitness app for tracking your workouts.
Thus, moving your data between any two services can be complicated because every service is built differently and people increasingly want to be able to move their data among different kinds of services like these, but they expect that the companies that help them do that will also protect their data.
“These are the kinds of issues the Data Transfer Project will tackle. The Project is in its early stages, and we hope more organizations and experts will get involved,” Facebook said in a blog post.
The Data Transfer Project is an open source initiative aiming to empower any company to create tools that enable people to freely move their information across the web - without barriers.
Earlier this year, the company has added a new Privacy Shortcuts menu where you can control your data in just a few taps, with clearer explanations of how our controls work. From here you can add more layers of protection to your account, like two-factor authentication. If you turn this on and someone tries to log into your account from a device that Facebook does not recognise, will be asked to confirm whether it was you.
Users can also review information that they have shared over the platform and delete it if they want to. This includes posts you’ve shared or reacted to, friend requests you’ve sent, and things you’ve searched for on Facebook. Users can manage things like who sees your posts and the information you choose to include on your profile.
Facebook also introduced “Access Your Information” – a secure way for people to access and manage their information, such as posts, reactions, comments, and things you’ve searched for. You can go here to delete anything from your timeline or profile that you no longer want on Facebook.
The announcement comes after introduction of GDPR in the EU that aims to protect consumers inside the European Union, including the requirement that all companies offer some kind of data download tool for users.