Facebook whistleblower reveals id, says company ‘chooses profits over security’

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Internal paperwork printed by the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) just lately revealed that Facebook allowed VIPs to interrupt its guidelines and that it was conscious of how Instagram affected the psychological well being of teenagers. Now, the whistleblower who introduced that data to mild has revealed herself as Frances Haugen in an interview with 60 Minutes, the New York Times has reported.

“I’ve seen a bunch of social networks and it was substantially worse at Facebook than what I had seen before,” Haugen advised the NYT. “Facebook, over and over again, has shown it chooses profit over safety.” 

Haugen joined Facebook in 2019, engaged on democracy and misinformation points, whereas additionally dealing with counterespionage, based on a personal website and Twitter account she and her staff arrange. She labored as a Facebook product supervisor and left the company in May. 

She first introduced “tens of thousands” of pages of inside Facebook paperwork to Whistleblower Aid founder John Tye, requesting authorized safety and assist in releasing the data. The trove included inside company analysis, slide decks, cover letters and extra. She additionally filed a whistleblower criticism with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), accusing Facebook of taking inside actions that did not match its public statements. 

In the SEC criticism, Haugen in contrast Facebook’s inside analysis and paperwork to public statements and disclosures made by CEO Mark Zuckerberg and different executives. In one instance, she mentioned that Facebook contributed to election misinformation and the January sixth US Capitol rebellion. 

“Facebook has publicized its work to combat misinformation and violent extremism relating to the 2020 election and insurrection,” she wrote in a cover letter on the topic. ” In reality, Facebook knew its algorithms and platforms promoted this type of harmful content, and it failed to deploy internally recommended or lasting countermeasures.”

On prime of being in contact with the SEC’s whistleblower office, which usually gives protections for company tipsters, she and her authorized staff contacted Senators Richard Blumenthal (D) and Marsha Blackburn (R). She additionally spoke to lawmakers in France and Britain, together with a member of the European parliament. 

Facebook, which has struggled to quell leaks of late, preemptively pushed again forward of the 60 Minutes interview, calling the accusations “misleading.” VP for coverage and world affairs Nick Clegg advised CNN that Facebook represented “the good, the bad and the ugly of humanity” and that it was making an attempt to “mitigate the bad, reduce it and amplify the good.” He added that it was “ludicrous” guilty January sixth on social media.

In a press release to the New York Times, Facebook spokesperson Lena Pietsch mentioned it was persevering with “to make significant improvements to tackle the spread of misinformation and harmful content. To suggest we encourage bad content and do nothing is just not true.” On Tuesday, December fifth, Haugen is about to testify in Congress about points surrounding Facebook’s influence on younger customers. 

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