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October « 2010 « The FORWARD project blog

Archive for October, 2010

Zynga sued for sharing Facebook User IDS to advertizers and data brokers

Sunday, October 24th, 2010

The largest Facebook games developer has been hit by a fundamental lawsuit for leaking the personal information of 218 million Facebook members to third parties.

Only days have passed since The Wall Street Journal investigated that a large number of Facebooks apps – including Zynga games such as Farmville and Mafia Wars  – leaked the user IDs of Facebook players and their friends to outside companies.

User IDs are unique identifiers, which can be used to access a user’s Facebook profile by simply going to http://www.facebook.com/#!/profile.php?id=[UID].

The actual harm that might be done if a user’s Facebook ID is exposed is debatable so Zynga representatives called the lawsuit without merit and stressed that they are preparing a strong defense, according to The Register.

The Facebook social network prohibits the sharing of user IDs with data brokers in its privacy policies and in order to assuage the critics following this privacy breaches is planning to encrypt the user IDs.