(RTTNews) - Facebook suspended "tens of thousands" of apps due to concerns of data privacy and a variety of other issues, according to blog post by the social media giant. This follows its ongoing App Developer Investigation which began in March of 2018 that addressed millions of apps.
The suspended apps are associated with about 400 developers. Facebook has also banned a few apps completely.
These apps were found including others inappropriately sharing data obtained from Facebook users, making data publicly available without protecting people's identity.
One app Facebook banned called myPersonality was found sharing information with researchers and companies with only limited protections in place, and then also refused Facebook's request to participate in an audit.
Apart from suspending and banning apps, Facebook also took legal action. It filed a lawsuit in May in California against Rankwave, a South Korean data analytics company that failed to cooperate with Facebook's investigation.
It also filed an action against LionMobi and JediMobi, two companies that used their apps to infect users' phones with malware in a profit-generating scheme. In another case, Facebook sued two Ukrainian men, Gleb Sluchevsky and Andrey Gorbachov, for using quiz apps to obtain users' data from Facebook's platform.
Facebook removed a number of APIs, the channels that developers use to access various types of data. It also decided not to allow apps on Facebook that request a disproportionate amount of information from users relative to the value they provide.
Facebook has been riddled by data privacy issues since the 2018 Cambridge Analytica scandal came to light. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) had imposed a $5 billion penalty in July after a year-long investigation on Facebook for violating consumers' privacy related to the scandal.
This was the second largest penalty ever imposed by FTC and the largest ever imposed by the FTC on a technology company after the $22.5 million fine imposed on Google in 2012.. The settlement order also imposed new restrictions on Facebook's business operations.
Facebook also had come under heavy criticism last year in the wake of revelations that data relating to 87 million people was accessed by British political consulting firm Cambridge Analytica, which was linked to U.S. President Donald Trump's election campaign, without their permission.
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