TAG | information sharing
This WSJ article reports on a new privacy issue with Facebook. It turns out that their application infrastructure allow those applications access to your personal information independent of your privacy settings. They are then able to (and have in many cases been shown to) share that information with third parties. The specific information shared is your Facebook user ID, and in some cases your friend’s user IDs.
Many of the most popular applications have been shown to be sharing this information, including FarmVille, Texas HoldEm Poker and FrontierVille among others.
It looks like many technology companies recognize that the writing is on the wall and that some kind of consumer privacy legislation will come down the pipe at some point.
They are endorsing this one (with some suggested changes) because it adopts a self-regulatory program, rather than requiring specific actions.
It is a tricky balance. On the one hand self-regulation is notoriously ineffective and self serving. On the other hand, detailed regulation is almost always out dated before it is passed and does at least as much damage as good.