Facebook, now known as Meta, is providing a new Privacy Center tool to users that consists of a comprehensive overview of the platform’s various data tracking aspects.
There are five main elements in the Privacy Center, including Security, Sharing, Collection, Use, and Ads. All of them explain how Meta collects data in each of them and provide the options to turn tracking off for each of the elements.
Security offers tools like two-factor authentication with which users can strengthen account security. It further explains how Meta combats data scraping.
The Sharing tab shows users who can view their posts. It offers tools like Manage Activity that can help users delete old posts that they no longer want to be on their profiles.
Collection shows different types of data that Meta collects and offers users the ability to view this data through tools like Access Your Information.
The Use section explains how and why Meta collects users’ data. It further offers control tools that help manage the information that a user wants to or doesn’t want to share.
Lastly, the Ads tab is there to explain how the ads that users see are based on the data collected from them. Tools like Ad Preferences offer control options for the ads that are displayed on users’ feed.
The Privacy Center doesn’t offer anything new or different, since it is based on Facebook’s existing privacy tools. However, there is a reason why Meta has decided to launch the new tool.
Recently, Facebook were issued a $68 million fine by the French data protection agency CNIL for breaching the cookie tracking law in France. The company was further investigated for the way it presents data tracking choices to users. CNIL argued that Facebook offers a button that allows the user to immediately accept cookies, and does not provide an equivalent solution that would allow the user to refuse the deposit of these cookies if they wish to. The agency noted that this act exploits the users’ freedom of consent, which is an infringement of Article 82 of the French Data Protection Act.
Therefore, it looks like Meta’s attempt to provide a more comprehensive and transparent overview of its cookie tracking policies aligns with the requirements of data protection laws in a better way. It also provides controls that are easier to use for turning off data tracking for any of the five elements of the platform’s Privacy Center.