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Daily Trends Now

Private practice: Is it too late for Facebook to change?

Private practice: Is it too late for Facebook to change?

"Frankly we don't now have a strong reputation for building privacy protective services, and we've historically focused on tools for more open sharing", he wrote in his blog post.

Secure data storage: one of the most important point here is Zuckerberg vowed not to save user data in countries which "have a track record of violating human rights like privacy or freedom of expression".

Facebook will work toward end-to-end encryption for all private communications, Zuckerberg said, but the decentralization of data doesn't come without its concerns. As private messaging becomes more important, Facebook and Zuckerberg want to ensure that both Messenger and WhatsApp will remain the main ways of private communication. "But we have repeatedly shown that we can evolve to build the services people really want, including private messages and stories", Zuckerberg wrote in a lengthy blog post.

"So we won't keep messages or stories around for longer than necessary to deliver the service or longer than people want them".

"I believe the future of communication will increasingly shift to private, encrypted services where people can be confident what they say to each other stays secure and their messages and content won't stick around forever", the Facebook CEO predicted.

The integration plans, which were first reported in late January, and which haven't yet been officially acknowledged by the company, are controversial because they would tighten Facebook's control over the services' previously independent operations, raising questions around security, competition and data protection.

Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg has said the social media giant will be encrypting more of its messaging services, calling it "the right thing to do".

Facebook says its future is "privacy-focussed".

But the general sentiment among a sampling of data-security experts, including several attending the RSA cybersecurity conference in San Francisco this week, was one of skepticism and suspicion that Facebook is again offering mere lip service to an issue that has dogged it for at least two years.

Zuckerberg plans to integrate WhatsApp, Instagram, and Facebook - the three social messaging apps will remain as stand-alone apps, but their technical configurations will be unified. "Zuckerberg's essay is a power grab disguised as an act of contrition".

End-to-end encryption, which encrypts conversations from the moment they leave the sender's phone until they arrive at the recipient's, prevents anyone in the middle reading it - including Facebook itself.

Facebook has been sharply criticised in the past over lack of user privacy and the spread of offensive content and "fake news". He said Facebook is also improving its ability to "identity and stop bad actors" by detecting patterns and through unnamed "other means".

Leading up to the post, Facebook has been developing tools to empower users - for example, an "erase history" feature that will let people delete data Facebook stores about internet browsing and other online behaviors.

Zuckerberg uses his F8 conference keynote in September to outline a vision in which data about our lives flows into Facebook, and is stored indefinitely, without our ongoing involvement.

He did not offer a firm timeline for his vision, but said changes would take place "over the next few years". People find these valuable every day, and there are still a lot of useful services to build on top of them. Users would also have more options for how long chats are saved, he added.

Zuckerberg also hinted private, encrypted messaging could create room for new tools, like around payments and commerce.


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