"It is unacceptable that the company fundamentally changed the default settings on its social-networking platform to the detriment of a user...Facebook made the change only days after the company and other social networking sites providers participated at a hearing during the Article 29 Working Party’s plenary meeting in November 2009."
In its letter to Facebook, the Article 29 Working Party also added that default settings should protect users rather than expose their data. An interesting article from the New York Times this week showed that currently users have to navigate through 50 different privacy settings with an excess of 170 options to disable the default settings and protect their data.
The Article 29 Working Party has now added its voice to the criticism. It said that in its letter to Facebook it had emphasised that default settings should protect, not expose, users' private information. The Article 29 Working Party also addressed the issue of third party applications having access to users` data and the disclosure of third person data contained in users` profiles to other users.
Additionally, the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) has made a similar complaint about Facebook to the FTC on the ground that Facebook is engaging in unfair and deceptive trade practices.