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Facebook Can Use Phone Numbers For Targeted Advertising

By - Source: Facebook | B 22 comments

Common sense suggests that you should not be posting on Facebook what you do not want the world to know.

Common sense also suggests that using Facebook isn't free and that the content and information you post on Facebook will be considered for monetization. So, this should not be too surprising.

While Facebook denied that it is directly selling phone numbers to advertisers, and is using the phone numbers only for security reasons, it only said half the truth in a move that is best described as don't ask, don't tell. An entry posted to the Facebook developer pages provides some information that phone numbers are, in fact, used for custom audience targeting. According to the post, phone numbers and email addressed can be leveraged, provided they already generated this data, either from within Facebook or through other means.

Advertisers will have to hash the data to target specific audiences and avoid scatter shooting to make their advertising more effective. Facebook claims that it does sync phone numbers, but it does report a number of hits, albeit not a list of user names.

If you guard your privacy on Facebook with reasonable measures anyway, you may already have questioned the reasons for providing a phone number to the social network already. However, for those who do not and may not be overly cautious, Facebook can certainly be accused of not be entirely open about the phone number issue.

 

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  • 21 Hide
    wannabepro , November 21, 2012 11:05 PM
    Facebook: For Tools and Fools
  • 17 Hide
    abbadon_34 , November 21, 2012 11:37 PM
    why would anybody put their phone number on Facebook!?
  • 10 Hide
    xpeh , November 21, 2012 11:06 PM
    Good thing I don't have a Facebook! Not that I need one, anyway. Real life > Facebook
Other Comments
  • 21 Hide
    wannabepro , November 21, 2012 11:05 PM
    Facebook: For Tools and Fools
  • 10 Hide
    xpeh , November 21, 2012 11:06 PM
    Good thing I don't have a Facebook! Not that I need one, anyway. Real life > Facebook
  • 6 Hide
    mrmaia , November 21, 2012 11:14 PM
    Nothing convinces me Google doesn't do something similar. They even use the same "security reasons" excuse.
  • 10 Hide
    joytech22 , November 21, 2012 11:23 PM
    mrmaiaNothing convinces me Google doesn't do something similar. They even use the same "security reasons" excuse.


    Well it seems Google has actually been quite trustworthy, Facebook has been exposed time and time again. Google already has targeted advertising through its search engine and other sites but they aren't the same greedy company others such as Facebook are.
  • 17 Hide
    abbadon_34 , November 21, 2012 11:37 PM
    why would anybody put their phone number on Facebook!?
  • 5 Hide
    edogawa , November 21, 2012 11:39 PM
    I have a Facebook account, I don't use it. I prefer a good old fashion face to face conversation and handshakes over.
  • -2 Hide
    aoneone , November 22, 2012 12:33 AM
    hehe Everyone is getting commercialized and used for money... But not me ^_^. Thank god I leave no carbon print online.

    I have always been computer savvy since 1995 and I wake up every morning thanking the Cosmos that I didn't end up becoming a Facebook and/or Twitter zombie.

    Guess what? You feel like deleting your account? Well since 2011 you can close, ban, delete all you want, but you will ALWAYS leave some kind of 'print'.

    Welp, have fun getting identified.. time for me to lurk back into anonymity shadows see ya! ^_^
  • 1 Hide
    JOSHSKORN , November 22, 2012 1:33 AM
    wannabeproFacebook: For Tools and Fools

    Yeah, well, so is an iPhone.
  • 2 Hide
    Kami3k , November 22, 2012 1:42 AM
    aoneonehehe Everyone is getting commercialized and used for money... But not me ^_^. Thank god I leave no carbon print online. I have always been computer savvy since 1995 and I wake up every morning thanking the Cosmos that I didn't end up becoming a Facebook and/or Twitter zombie. Guess what? You feel like deleting your account? Well since 2011 you can close, ban, delete all you want, but you will ALWAYS leave some kind of 'print'. Welp, have fun getting identified.. time for me to lurk back into anonymity shadows see ya! ^_^


    Your IP can be traced to where you live.

    Have fun digesting that bit of info.
  • 3 Hide
    classzero , November 22, 2012 1:48 AM
    JOSHSKORNYeah, well, so is an iPhone.

    Really, where did that come from. Bad troll, bad!
  • 2 Hide
    jalek , November 22, 2012 2:06 AM
    Kami3kYour IP can be traced to where you live.Have fun digesting that bit of info.


    The Petraus investigation showed how well disposable email accounts worked, they compared IP addresses, travel histories, and hotel records to get names to tie to the accounts.
  • 0 Hide
    edgewood112358 , November 22, 2012 2:37 AM
    Kami3kYour IP can be traced to where you live.Have fun digesting that bit of info.


    I've got one acronym for you: TOR

    Also, in general people should take it for granted in this day and age that almost anything they put online is not truly secure or private, and should take due precautions.
  • 0 Hide
    darkavenger123 , November 22, 2012 4:27 AM
    I have a Facebook account. But i don't use FB. My real life is way more interesting!!!
  • -1 Hide
    Auroram , November 22, 2012 5:57 AM
    edgewood112358I've got one acronym for you: TORAlso, in general people should take it for granted in this day and age that almost anything they put online is not truly secure or private, and should take due precautions.

    I hope you'll never want to own any domains then. Whois tools don't care about TOR. :p 
  • 1 Hide
    Gundam288 , November 22, 2012 6:20 AM
    edgewood112358I've got one acronym for you: TORAlso, in general people should take it for granted in this day and age that almost anything they put online is not truly secure or private, and should take due precautions.


    TOR is not a fix all, sadly. As you said, almost anything you put online is not truly secure and or private, this includes TOR, proxys, etc. If someone really wants to find you that bad, they will. Taking precautions will help tho.


    Just think about what you are putting on the internet before you post/upload/download and you should be better off than just using TOR alone.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , November 22, 2012 8:15 AM
    aoneonehehe Everyone is getting commercialized and used for money... But not me ^_^. Thank god I leave no carbon print online. I have always been computer savvy since 1995 and I wake up every morning thanking the Cosmos that I didn't end up becoming a Facebook and/or Twitter zombie. Guess what? You feel like deleting your account? Well since 2011 you can close, ban, delete all you want, but you will ALWAYS leave some kind of 'print'. Welp, have fun getting identified.. time for me to lurk back into anonymity shadows see ya! ^_^


    Wear silver foil hats much?
  • 0 Hide
    cats_Paw , November 22, 2012 10:04 AM
    "Common Sence". Unfortunatelly, it is something very hard to find nowdays.
    My main us in FB is trolling my friends, posting funny pics to make them laught, and writing to stay in somewhat of a contact with distant friends.

    Cant see any more use for that page :D 
  • 1 Hide
    virtualban , November 22, 2012 11:58 AM
    abbadon_34why would anybody put their phone number on Facebook!?

    Because facebook pesters users for it. And to the people who are naturally worried about stalking, facebook reassures the humber will be used only for account verification in case of a hack. I remember several occasions where facebook pestered me enough for me to give them the work mobile just to get rid of the notice.
    But what I can say is that the other account that got no phone number from me got deactivated... they said because it was not a real person. I would say 'who cares?' but I was actually pissed about it. I actually used that to check if my privacy settings took place or were publicly visible. I don't want clicking 'like' on a 9gag post with some funny but maybe sexist joke, and have my boss see it on my timeline or on his feed. So, checking it via the alternative account was useful. But facebook decided that no phone meant I was to be booted.
  • 0 Hide
    izmanq , November 22, 2012 4:35 PM
    i thought as user can choose which information is published, and now they sell our private information, now phone number, what's next ? our private picture is available ? address ? i can't believe governments as in US and Europe could allow this, they should block facebook services.
  • 0 Hide
    mesab66 , November 22, 2012 5:41 PM
    virtualban: just because there's a box for a phone number (or anything else) doesn't mean you have to put in your actual phone number (or most other things)! I take great offence when I'm increasingly asked for personal info for online registration for certain things, and I duly oblige with utter bolloks.
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