Access and Feeds

Data Governance: Facebook/Meta Needs Change to Achieve Compliance

By Dick Weisinger

Regulators worldwide are calling for controls and restrictions on how Facebook uses and protects user data. In 2021, Facebook warned its shareholders that it was facing ‘regulatory headwinds‘.

Jason Kint, the CEO of Digital Content Next, told the Australian Financial Review, that “data protection and limitations on the use of data is what’s going to get Facebook. The headwinds they’re talking about and the regulatory issues that are collapsing around them globally, they’re only going to get worse. You’ve got the strongest privacy law in America rolling out next year, in California. You’ve got the trans-Atlantic data flow restriction that will likely be confirmed later this year. And then you’ve got GDPR enforcement getting ratcheted up.”

A recently leaked document from Facebook shows internal anxiety about how to address regulatory demands. “We do not have an adequate level of control and explainability over how our systems use data, and thus we can’t confidently make controlled policy changes or external commitments such as ‘we will not use X data for Y purpose.’ And yet, this is exactly what regulators expect us to do, increasing our risk of mistakes and misrepresentation.”

The document goes on to give the following analogy: “the result of these open systems and open culture is well described with an analogy: Imagine you hold a bottle of ink in your hand. This bottle of ink is a mixture of all kinds of user data. You pour that ink into a lake of water (our open data systems; our open culture) … and it flows … everywhere. How do you put that ink back in the bottle? How do you organize it again, such that it only flows to the allowed places in the lake?”

Daniel Markuson, a cybersecurity expert at NordVPN, said that “considering Facebook’s sad history of data leaks and the findings of the recent report, we can never be sure where our data may end up once we give it to Facebook.”

The solution? In order to comply with regulations, Facebook needs radical re-engineering of how user data is collected, protected, and controlled.

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One comment on “Data Governance: Facebook/Meta Needs Change to Achieve Compliance
  1. Your blog discussing the need for Data Governance changes at Facebook/Meta is truly insightful, emphasizing compliance urgency. Exceptional research and timing. Well done!

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