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Local digital marketing expert provides advice for protecting your Facebook information

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In the aftermath of the Cambridge Analytica scandal, the owner of Holland-based digital marketing agency Symposia Labs is offering marketing clients and Facebook user’s advice. WGVU spoke with Tim Haines about Facebook’s handling of the scandal and how Facebook users can protect their personal information. 

“I think the power of advertising is shown in an incident like this. But ultimately, in our mind, this really came down to unethical behavior on the behalf of the firm, Cambridge Analytica, and it also came down to an opportunity to improve data policy when it came to Facebook. And I think that’s demonstrated by the fact that this had already been addressed when it comes to Facebook Third Party Service terms of use.”

We asked Tim Haines, owner of Symposia Labs, if he thinks Mark Zuckerberg, Chief Executive Officer of Facebook, has responded appropriately?

“I would like to see him be even more concerned about it.”

What has been lacking in his response?

“I think the public is worried. And I think maybe if he’s a t a volume six he needs to turn it up to a volume 10 as far as how equally concerned he is about this.”

Has Haines noticed anything changes in the way Facebook does business?

“It has rejected, you I think they closed down third party apps, data request applications, they have done some notable things but I do think there has been some lip service and that concerns me. They’re really emphasizing when it comes to Facebook they’re P.R. department is pushing the fact that this was not a data breach, you know, that it allows these researchers to access this data all the time. I don’t know if they’ve taken it as seriously as they need to, to be frank. Privacy equals trust. Use of Facebook ultimately comes down to trust. People don’t trusts the app then they won’t use it and then stock process will go down. So, there were some full-page ads I saw them take out but to me that feels still more like lip service. We’re really looking for a cultural change in these tech companies, and Facebook is certainly not alone, but we’re looking for a cultural change so that their entire company really understands at a core level how big of a deal this is.”

What protections does Haines recommend to Facebook users?

“The most concrete action-step that a Facebook user can take, if they want to continue to use the platform, which again we think Facebook, Instagram, many of these social media tools are fantastic, so if you want to continue using the platform we really encourage you to do a security audit. Facebook has its own audit tool that you can walk through and there’s also a really good list from third parties such as the New York Times at this point to do a kind of D.I.Y. version. And I think that’s probably the best thing you can do.”

Patrick Center, WGVU News.