Sam­sung phone users per­turbed to find they can’t delete Face­book

Swazi Observer - - BUSINESS -

IN­TER­NA­TIONAL - Nick Winke, a pho­tog­ra­pher in the Pa­cific north­west, was pe­rus­ing in­ter­net fo­rums when he came across a com­plaint that alarmed him: On cer­tain Sam­sung Elec­tron­ics Co. smart­phones, users aren’t al­lowed to delete the Face­book app.

Winke bought his Sam­sung Galaxy S8, an An­droid-based de­vice that comes with Face­book’s so­cial net­work al­ready in­stalled, when it was in­tro­duced in 2017. He has used the Face­book app to con­nect with old friends and to share pic­tures of nat­u­ral land­scapes and his Si­amese cat — but he didn’t want to be stuck with it. He tried to re­move the pro­gramme from his phone, but the chat­ter proved true — it was un­deletable. He found only an op­tion to ‘dis­able,’ and he wasn’t sure what that meant.

“It just ab­so­lutely baf­fles me that if I wanted to com­pletely get rid of Face­book that it es­sen­tially would still be on my phone, which brings up more ques­tions,” Winke said in an in­ter­view. “Can they still track your in­for­ma­tion, your lo­ca­tion, or what­ever else they do? We the con­sumer should have say in what we want and don’t want on our prod­ucts.”

Con­sumers have be­come more alert about their dig­i­tal rights and more vig­i­lant about pri­vacy in the past year, fol­low­ing rev­e­la­tions about Face­book’s in­for­ma­tion­shar­ing prac­tices and reg­u­la­tors’ height­ened scru­tiny of on­line data col­lec­tion.

Some peo­ple have deleted their Face­book ac­counts in protest of the com­pany’s lapses, while oth­ers sim­ply want to make sure they have the op­tion to do so.

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