Tech giant Facebook claims to have taken enforcement actions against people who abuse the platform. The company said that these enforcement actions have exceeded 300 and include sending cease and desist letters, filing lawsuits, requesting aid from hosting providers, disabling accounts, etc.
Facebook is all about protecting users and has a tough stance on data scraping which is the automated collection of data from an app or website.
In a statement, the tech giant released it said that “If we find scraped data sets containing Facebook data, there are no surefire options for getting them taken down or going after those responsible for them, but we may take a number of actions”.
In a recent case between the company and an operator that violated its terms called Massroot8, Facebook successfully settled. “Along with shutting down the service, we permanently banned the operator and anyone acting on his behalf from Facebook or Instagram”, the company revealed in its statement.
As a way of protecting its platforms, Facebook revealed that it has started an External Data Misuse team. The team consists of over a hundred people charged with the onus of detecting, investigating, and blocking suspected patterns of behaviour associated with scraping. “We work with researchers to find and secure publicly accessible datasets that contain Facebook user data – whether the data appears to have originated from Facebook, or a Facebook app developer. These datasets are found across a range of hosting providers and online platforms”, Facebook said.
Out of the various data scraping techniques that exist, Phone Number Enumeration is one that Facebook has worked the highest to combat.
Data scraping is an evil that does not only affect social media companies, it is a problem for many companies and industries like e-commerce, banks, hospitality, etc. Social media platforms like Clubhouse and LinkedIn have also suffered from data scraping-related problems.