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Facebook Apps Just Don't Care (About Privacy)
By: Christine Geraci
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Yes, apps are fun. Yes, they're easy to use. But there's no such thing as a free lunch, especially when it comes to Facebook. 
 
More than likely, you're a serial offender when it comes to Facebook apps: The "love match" quizzes, the "what Big Bang Theory character are you" tests, the random game-score announcements. I know I'm one of those people every now and again. But now, I'm going to seriously put on the brakes. Why? Here's why:
 
These apps are, no joke, straight-up identity cancers. 
 
Well, maybe not all of them. But why take your chances?
 
Check out this exclusive analysis the company Secure.me performed and shared with Mashable. The most damning revelation in this report is that "privacy controls" Facebook recently put into place for third-party apps are basically useless. These apps are digital honey badgers that just don't care. 
 
Before, people essentially signed their online identities away to use these apps, clicking "Yes," without really understanding what they were saying "yes" to. What they were doing was giving the ability for that app to do all sorts of invasive things like crawl their profile information, post randomly under their names without permission, sell their profile data to other companies, and more. Privacy controls were supposed to curtail that by allowing people to choose the types of profile information the app could access, as well as the sharing options. 
 
But the Secure.me analysis basically says that apps go ahead and get all shady even if people do utilize those privacy controls. Awesome.
 
Facebook was at least quick to "reassure" us that any app not following their privacy policies would be dealt with. That's nice, but once again, Facebook appears reactionary. Once Facebook finds an app to be in violation of its privacy policies, that app may very well have gotten what it came for, and it won't matter if it's shut down.
 
Why is there no app "screening process" to make sure an app's mechanisms follow privacy controls before they are deployed? I don't see why something like this wouldn't be possible. What do you think? 


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About the Author
Christine Geraci is the Social Media/Promotions Specialist at MVP Health Care in Schenectady, NY. Connect with her on Twitter @christinegeraci.
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