Facebook seems to be cleaning house in a bid to regain trust after the Cambridge Analytica scandal. The company has been auditing and suspending tens of thousands of apps on its platform and that is not the end.
Now, the social network has chosen to take legal action against two developers for failing to comply with an audit and selling services that inflate Instagram users’ engagement stats, respectively.
One of them happens to be an American developer, Nikolay Holper. According to Facebook, he was using “a network of bots and automation software to distribute fake likes, comments, views and followers on Instagram [and selling] fake engagement services.” This is despite being warned before by Facebook about the violation of terms.
The other, MobiBurn is accused of paying app developers to install a malicious software development kit (SDK) in their apps.
“When people installed those apps on their devices, MobiBurn collected information from the devices and requested data from Facebook, including the person’s name, time zone, email address and gender,” Facebook says.
The same warning was reportedly given to MobiBurn prior to the lawsuit but it fell to deaf ears. Additionally, Facebook asked the firm to participate in an audit, but it “failed to fully cooperate”.
“Today’s actions are the latest in our efforts to protect people who use our services, hold those who abuse our platform accountable, and advance the state of the law around data misuse and privacy,” Facebook says.
This could be the start of something special for Facebook as it looks to tighten up security for its users. But we can all admit that there is a whole lot more to be done to ever make it a done deal.