Facebook suspends around 200 apps over potential data misuse


So far, the investigation has seen Facebook suspend around 200 apps. Facebook first identifies apps that had access to "large amounts of data", like Cambridge Analytica, the data firm and Trump campaign consultant that harvested the information of 87 million unwitting users. The update notes that if evidence is found for apps misusing user data, it will show users whether they or their friends installed those apps before 2015.

After the Cambridge Analytica scandal, Facebook users have been incentivised to dig through the information Facebook had on them, which revealed the data scraping the lawsuit brings to the court. Mark Zuckerberg said the social network will investigate all apps that had access to large amounts of information before the company curtailed data access in 2014.

The probe, launched on 21 March as part of Facebook's efforts to look like it's taking action (though the horse bolted long ago), aims to find out if any other app developers have "misused" data.

"Facebook's stated business model has morphed into a data aggregation and marketing scheme disguised as a social network", the filing states.

'We are investing heavily to make sure this investigation is as thorough and timely as possible. He also made clear that where we had concerns about individual apps we would audit them - and any app that either refused or failed an audit would be banned from Facebook.

In addition to carrying out its own internal investigations Facebook has since updated its external privacy settings for its users.

Apps that access information from Pages, which are often used for tasks like scheduling posts and responding to messages and comments, will need Facebook's approval.

Once the second phase is complete, Facebook users will be notified via a Facebook website if their personal data was jeopardized.

Given the likely scale of data misuse by developers on its platform there is an argument for Facebook to publish a public list of suspensions.