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Saavn among companies that got extended access to Facebook user data

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Responding in detail to American legislators’ questions to Facebook, the company said that 61 companies got extended access to user data and, in some cases, their friends’ data, Business Insider reports. These firms had access to this information even if users’ friends had strict privacy settings. This comes in the wake of heightened scrutiny on Facebook’s privacy practices, after the Cambridge Analytica scandal, where millions of users’ data was harvested to target election ads, against Facebook’s own rules governing such data use.

Read Facebook’s 747-page submission to US officials here.

What data was used

To tighten user privacy, Facebook introduced a more restrictive API that all app developers would comply with. The newer API, from 2014, was designed to let developers access more limited user data than before. For context, APIs or Application Programming Interfaces are a software layer that allows applications to access features or data from a platform like Facebook. But the 61 firms, including Snap (which owns Snapchat), music service Spotify, social media management service Hootsuite, and rideshare app Uber, got almost six extra months to be compliant. American streaming app Saavn, which just got acquired by Reliance Jio, is one of the companies that got extended access.

Before making their services compliant with the new policy, these developers’ apps had access to “name, gender, birthdate, location, photos, and page likes,” the BI report quoted Facebook as saying. It’s unclear why these companies got extended access to comply with the API update since many of the names seem to have the resources to comply within the timelines that were set for other developers.

List of apps

Here’s the list of apps, from Facebook’s submission accessed by BI, that got a few months’ extension for making sure their APIs were compliant.

  1. ABCSocial, ABC Television Network
  2. Actiance
  3. Adium
  4. Anschutz Entertainment Group
  5. AOL
  6. Arktan / Janrain
  7. Audi
  8. biNu
  9. Cerulean Studios
  10. Coffee Meets Bagel
  11. DataSift
  12. Dingtone
  13. Double Down Interactive
  14. Endomondo
  15. Flowics, Zauber Labs
  16. Garena
  17. Global Relay Communications
  18. Hearsay Systems
  19. Hinge
  20. HiQ International AB
  21. Hootsuite
  22. Krush Technologies
  23. LiveFyre / Adobe Systems
  24. Mail.ru
  25. MiggoChat
  26. Monterosa Productions Limited
  27. never.no AS
  28. NIKE
  29. Nimbuzz
  30. NISSAN MOTOR CO / Airbiquity Inc.
  31. Oracle
  32. Panasonic
  33. Playtika
  34. Postano, TigerLogic Corporation
  35. Raidcall
  36. RealNetworks, Inc.
  37. RegED / Stoneriver RegED
  38. Reliance/Saavn
  39. Rovi
  40. Salesforce/Radian6
  41. SeaChange International
  42. Serotek Corp.
  43. Shape Services
  44. Smarsh
  45. Snap
  46. Social SafeGuard
  47. Socialeyes LLC
  48. SocialNewsdesk
  49. Socialware / Proofpoint
  50. SoundayMusic
  51. Spotify
  52. Spredfast
  53. Sprinklr / Sprinklr Japan
  54. Storyful Limited / News Corp
  55. Tagboard
  56. Telescope
  57. Tradable Bits, TradableBits Media Inc.
  58. UPS
  59. Vidpresso
  60. Vizrt Group AS
  61. Wayin

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