Facebook finally cracks down on apps with ‘minimal utility’

Facebook app

In an update to its app policies on Thursday, Facebook could stop allowing “apps with minimal utility,” like personality quizzes, on its platform.

“The update also clarifies that apps may not ask for data that doesn’t enrich the in-app, user experience,” wrote Facebook’s Eddie O’Neil in a blog post.

This comes after the fallout of the Cambridge Analytica scandal continues. The Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada (OPC) and B.C. Privacy Commission released a report on Thursday which outlined how 300 Canadians using the “This Is Your Digital Life” app to harvest the personal information of 622,161 Canadians.

The report also revealed that the social media company did not follow the guidance from the OPC after a similar investigation occurred in 2009.

“If Facebook had implemented the 2009 investigation’s recommendations meaningfully, the risk of unauthorized access and use of Canadians’ personal information by third-party apps could have been avoided or significantly mitigated,” the commissioners said.

Following those events, the OPC said it would stop using Facebook and it intends to seek an order to force Facebook to “correct its privacy practices,” while the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner for B.C. intends to use rights under the PIPA to consider “future actions against Facebook.”