Hot potatoes: Facebook executives do not like the fact that a significant number of recent leaks reveal the company’s activities. Several controversies put the social platform in a negative light. Much of the information came from documents leaked to press services and from numerous informers who released dangerous allegations of potentially illegal activity.
Facebook is probably one of the best known companies when it comes to respecting people’s privacy. There are many examples of the company’s ambiguous stance, including Cambridge Analytica, WhatsApp’s forced communication, and its efforts to spy on encrypted data without breaking encryption.
Ironically, recent internal leaks, primarily from whistleblowers, have caused the social media giant to pull up its hatches. Facebook is now making efforts to prevent leaks by keeping highly sensitive internal groups closed. This change in domestic politics has already been leaked to the press, exacerbating the situational irony.
The New York Times notes that before whistleblower Frances Haugen spoke about Facebook’s controversial policies and concerns, the company had a relatively open culture in the workplace. The staff were encouraged share your ideas on various issues related to the company. In this relaxed atmosphere, Haugen allegedly obtained documents, including internal research into the mental impact of social media on teens, a policy allowing “VIPs” to break rules, and other sensitive issues.
I have provided detailed documentation of potential criminal violations to US law enforcement agencies. As far as I understand, the investigation is still ongoing.
I just didn’t want to post this on the front pages.
Why does this make me less of a whistleblower? https://t.co/tizQwetrsN
– Sophie Zhang （张学 菲） (@szhang_ds) October 10, 2021
It’s worth noting that the former Facebook data analyst issued a statement earlier this week that she had filed a criminal case against the company with the SEC. She previously leaked information on how Facebook handles disinformation.
Employees and managers readily shared much of this information on Facebook’s internal messaging platform, “Workplace.” The company is currently blocking access to certain groups in the workplace and removing from them employees “whose work is not related to security.”
“As everyone probably knows, we have seen an increase in integrity-related leaks in recent months,” the company told employees in a memo received by The NY Times. “These leaks do not reflect the nuances and complexities of our work, and are often taken out of context, leading to a misjudgment of our work from the outside. In the future, discussion of delicate honesty will take place in closed, carefully selected forums. ”
Facebook is no stranger to regulatory investigations. In 2018, the company was the subject of a privacy investigation by the Federal Trade Commission, which resulted in a $ 5 billion fine. A recent leak of internal mental health research data led Facebook to suspend the Instagram for Kids app, prompting Congress to demand a complete waiver of the project. Congress then ordered the executives of Facebook and Instagram to testify on the matter.