Ex-spy chief: Face­book may be a threat to democ­racy

Daily Mirror - - NEWS - BY BEN GLAZE Deputy Po­lit­i­cal Ed­i­tor

FACE­BOOK could threaten democ­racy un­less it is prop­erly reg­u­lated, a for­mer spy chief has warned.

Robert Han­ni­gan said yesterday the tech gi­ant was not a “fluffy char­ity” giv­ing free ser­vices, but try­ing to “squeeze ev­ery drop of profit” out of per­sonal data.

Asked if Face­book was a threat to democ­racy, the ex-head of in­tel­li­gence sta­tion GCHQ to REAL THREAT Robert Han­ni­gan ld the BBC: “Po­ten­tially yes, I think it is, if it isn’t con­trolled and reg­u­lated.” He said it could not re­form it­self and reg­u­la­tion “will have to come from out­side”. MPs this week pub­lished a cache of Face­book data that ap­peared to show it was of­fer­ing firms such as Net­flix and Airbnb spe­cial deals.

It was seem­ingly of­fer­ing ac­cess to data on a user’s friends, even af­ter such prac­tices were cur­tailed in 2015. Face­book said the cache told “only one side of the story”.

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