Facebook says it 'unintentionally uploaded' 1.5 million people's email contacts without their consent
Facebook harvested the email contacts of 1.5 million users without their knowledge or consent when they opened their accounts. Since May 2016, the company has collected the contact lists of 1.5 million users new to the social network. Facebook said the contact data was "unintentionally uploaded to Facebook," and it is now deleting them. The revelation comes after pseudononymous security researcher noticed that Facebook was asking some users to enter their email passwords when they signed up for new accounts to verify their identities, a move widely condemned by security experts. It was then discovered that if you entered your email password, a message popped up saying it was "importing" your contacts without asking for permission first. At the time, it wasn't clear what was happening — but on April 17, Facebook disclosed that 1.5 million people's contacts were collected this way and fed into Facebook's systems, where they were used to improve Facebook's ad targeting, build Facebook's web of social connections, and recommend friends to add.
Facebook says it 'unintentionally uploaded' 1.5 million people's email contacts without their consent Facebook ‘unintentionally uploaded’ 1.5 million users’ email contacts without permission (CNBC)