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Facebook keeps spying on some applications, even if you don't have Facebook

At the end of last year we echoed an analysis of Privacy International where they revealed that some applications sent information to Facebook about us, even if we were not Facebook users. The company has updated its report, indicating which of these applications have been updated to solve this problem.

Yes, Facebook keeps spying on you in these applications even if you don't have Facebook

2018 was a year in which Facebook was involved in a series of privacy-related scandals. One of the last affected us even if we didn't have Facebook, since some applications collected personal information from us at the time we opened the application. It didn't matter if we had a Facebook account or not.

Privacy International has updated in the last hours the report it published in December. Despite having contacted the applications, many of them have maintained the behavior that the agency denounced, and they keep spying on you from the first moment you open the application.

Applications like Yelp, Indeed and various religious applications (one from the Bible, and two Muslims) continue to exercise the same practices. They are not small applications, since they have figures that vary between 10 and 500 million downloads.

Some applications have been updated to avoid it

But not everything is bad news for those who care about privacy. Since the agency contacted the applications involved in the study, many of them have updated their applications to be more responsible with the use of personal information that Facebook collects.

What does this mean? These applications continue to have Facebook integration, so if we log in and grant permission to Facebok, it will continue to collect personal information. However, these applications no longer collect personal information at the time you open the application, to the delight of those who refuse to enter the Facebook game.

Which applications have solved their behavior? They emphasize that applications such as Spotify, Kayak, TripAdvisor, Skyscanner or MyfitnessPal, among others, no longer collect information for Facebook at the time they are open, and do not collect anything unless we log in with Facebook.

The fault is the Facebook SDK

For many, this scandal could mean that developers are evil, but nothing is further from reality. This negative behavior of applications is a consequence of the Facebook development kit, which applications must use if they wish to integrate their application with the social network.


The Facebook development kit is responsible for, by default, collecting information from these applications from the start. Because of this, a developer who does not change this setting manually exposes its users.

Are you a developer and use the Facebook SDK? you should keep in mind that by default, your application is also collecting information for Facebook, since the Facebook SDK itself is the one that has this default behavior, so perhaps your application is spying on your users without you knowing it.