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Mozilla pulls Facebook ads following Cambridge Analytica scandal


Mozilla has hit pause on Facebook advertising, and declared it will not consider returning until Facebook “takes stronger action” on how it shares customer data. This includes strengthening its default privacy settings for third part apps.

The move follows Facebook’s recent user data debacle involving UK-based data analytics firm Cambridge Analytica. This was addressed and acknowledged in a blog post written by Denelle Dixon, chief business and legal officer at Mozilla Corporation.

She added that the organisation understood Facebook took steps to limit developer access to friends’ data beginning in 2014 after it started its relationship with Cambridge University Professor Aleksandr Kogan. Kogan then subsequently decided to share data he collected from Facebook with Cambridge Analytica, a move which is currently causing a stir worldwide. The post said:

"This news caused us to take a closer look at Facebook’s current default privacy settings given that we support the platform with our advertising dollars."

While we believe there is still more to learn, we found that its current default settings leave open access to a lot of data – particularly with respect to settings for third party apps,” Dixon explained.

The newest development also comes days after Mozilla criticised Facebook in another blog post, which called for users to sign a petition demanding Facebook to change its app permissions. This comes along with ensuring that a user’s privacy is protected by default. The move was part of its broader movement for a healthy internet.

Mozilla’s decision also comes in the wake of Mark Zuckerberg’s statements surrounding the Cambridge Analytica incident, where he offered an update on the steps that Facebook has already taken and will take. Following the scandal, Facebook lost an estimate of US$60 billion in market cap.

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