Two Israel-based companies, including BrandTotal Ltd. and Unimania Inc., were found engaged in data scarping operations that, too, on an international level. The operations entered Facebook premises, including Facebook and Instagram, both including a few other tech giant companies such as Amazon, YouTube, Twitter, and LinkedIn. According to Facebook, the Israeli companies violated Facebook’s terms and gathered its users’ private data for the purpose of ‘marketing intelligence’.
Both the alleged companies offer services related to social media; however, out of all the services, Facebook’s lawsuit targets the two browser extensions by these companies, i.e., ‘UpVoice’ by BrandTotal and ‘Ads Feed’ by Unimania. Facebook says that these extensions violate Facebook’s terms because every time a user installs the extension and opens Facebook, the automated programs in the extension scrapes off all the personal data, including user ID, date of birth, gender, location, and every single bit of information associated with the account. The scarped data is then sent to the server by Unimania and BrandTotal.
As per Facebook, taking legal actions won’t be enough to stop the data scrapers from stealing the information; hence, they are working on establishing a team with technical education in order to detect any kind of suspicious activity taking place on the platform.