In a posting on its privacy blog, Facebook said the expanded archive feature would be introduced gradually to its 845 million monthly active users. It goes beyond the first archive made available in 2010, which has been criticized as incomplete by privacy advocates and regulators in Europe.
The archive Facebook published two years ago gave users a copy of their photos, posts, messages, list of friends and chat conversations. The new version, Facebook said, includes previous user names, friend requests and the Internet protocol addresses of the computers that users have logged in from. More categories of information will be made available in the future, Facebook said.
Online social networks offer free services to users and make money primarily through advertising, which can often be directed more effectively using the information the network has collected on them.
Facebook, which is preparing for an initial public stock offering, most likely in May, has been trying to accommodate government officials in Europe, where privacy laws are more stringent than in the United States.
Facebook’s data collection practices have tested the boundaries of Europe’s privacy laws. The social networking site, based in Menlo Park, Calif., is Europe’s leading online network, according to comScore, a research firm in Reston, Va.
In December, the Irish Data Protection Commission reached an agreement with Facebook, which runs its international businesses from offices in Dublin, to provide more information to its users and amend its data protection practices. “We took up their recommendation to make more data available to Facebook users through this expanded functionality,” the company said in a statement.
- Facebook Forecasts Best Time for Love (snspost.com)
- Facebook Says Service Went Down in Europe Temporarily Before Fix (snspost.com)
- Google CEO Faces Facebook Paranoia (snspost.com)
- Facebook Condemns Employers Asking For Passwords (snspost.com)