Facebook is making its privacy settings easier to find

Facebook privacy settings finally get a long-needed update

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Facebook's battered shares, which have dropped 17% in the past week and a half amid the Cambridge Analytica scandal, have gotten off to a strong start this morning after the company announced changes to its privacy settings. From the new setting page, people will be able to delete specific things they've shared or liked in the past, stopping advertisers from having access to that information.

For the unversed, Cambridge Analytica, the political data firm with ties to United States President Donald Trump's 2016 election campaign, is under fire for allegedly gaining access to private information of more than 50 million Facebook users, and influencing elections by using this stolen data. That included information on friends of people who had downloaded a psychological quiz app, even though those friends hadn't given explicit consent to sharing.

Facebook is receiving backlash for storing user's calls and SMS data. Facebook will need to approve access to other data. On Monday, the Federal Trade Commission said it is investigating Facebook over its privacy practices.

In its blog post, Facebook claims many of these changes have been in the works for a while and that regulators, legislators and privacy experts were consulted during the process.

Making it easier to find privacy settings is easy enough to explain.

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"Facebook is the face of a larger problem - the problem of big data and privacy - and it's so large and nebulous and intractable that we have no real way to understand it, and so we wait until one of these whistleblowers come along, and that will be keep happening". Facebook said these settings used to be "spread across almost 20 different screens".

Also on tap is a new Privacy Shortcuts menu, which will let you "control your data in just a few taps", Egan and Beringer wrote.

The new features make data settings more prominent and easy to find in hopes of encouraging users to be more proactive in protecting their information. They apply to any company that collects data on European Union residents, no matter where it is based. It's also separated settings into security, personal information, ads you see, and management of who sees your posts and profile information. But when she downloaded her archive earlier this week, she discovered that the videos hadn't been deleted; Facebook had apparently saved each of the unposted clips.

Cox said that while the changes are "in line with the principle of GDPR", there's also a "bunch of stuff that goes above and beyond that".

"We're taking additional steps in the coming weeks to put people more in control of their privacy", they confirmed.

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