U.S. Government Continues Focus on Facebook

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REUTERS/Rebecca Cook

The U.S. government is still poking around Facebook’s treatment of user data, despite the company’s release of revised privacy controls last week.

In a letter dated May 28, Rep. John Conyers of Michigan, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, asks Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg to explain how user data has been shared with third parties.

“We would appreciate a detailed explanation of the information about Facebook users that your company has provided to third parties without the knowledge of the account holders — particularly in circumstances in which the users did not expressly opt for this type of information sharing,” the letter reads.

While Conyers’ interest doesn’t necessarily portend any immediate action by the committee, it shows the spotlight is still firmly trained on Facebook. In April, a group of U.S. senators led by New York’s Charles Schumer sent a letter to Facebook demanding information about privacy changes the company has made. However, in the wake of meetings with Facebook execs and the recent privacy simplifications, Schumer has largely backed off his criticism, saying that Facebook had “heard the call of its users” last week. (via Mashable)