Facebook is almost always in the spotlight over data and privacy issues. However, the social media giant has been under especially intense scrutiny for the past month as a series of bombshell reports from The Wall Street Journal revealed that the company has known for years about the risk that its services pose to users. That’s why Facebook has gone on the defensive over the past week, publishing several lengthy defenses of its safety and security measures.
According to Facebook, the company employs 40,000 people to work on safety and security, and it has invested more than $13 billion in this space since 2016. The company also called it “plain false” that it ignores research results that are inconvenient for it. However, Facebook did admit that it hasn’t always prioritized security the way it does now.
“In the past, we didn’t address safety and security challenges early enough in the product development process,” Facebook wrote in a blog post. “Instead, we made improvements reactively in response to a specific abuse. But we have fundamentally changed that approach.”
It’s rare to see Facebook this rattled by reporting, so it’s obvious that The Wall Street Journal story and other recent revelations have the social media giant on its back foot. But instead of getting defensive, it would be more helpful if Facebook actually did more of the hard work necessary to improve its protections for users.
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