Meta consolidates its privacy policy to appease regulators

Meta has updated and redesigned how its notoriously thick user agreements are presented in an effort to make them less convoluted.

Instead of presenting the information as a large wall of text, the corporation emphasises that the  modifications are in form, not function, bolding some lines, adding subheaders, and graphics. The end effect is basically a massive wall of text, but it’s one that’s meant to appease regulators around the world who are increasing their scrutiny of how social media platforms inform customers.

Rob Sherman, Meta’s Deputy Chief Privacy Officer, noted “increased pressure” from regulators and privacy regulations requiring privacy policies to cover as much ground as feasible. Similar adjustments were made to the company’s terms of service, which outline the restrictions that users must follow when using its services.

“One of the issues that we and many other firms are having is that privacy rules truly… need to be thorough and provide explicit detail about how people’s data is handled and protected,” Sherman explained. “However, they must also be understandable, which means we must do more to assist individuals in navigating what is written.”

The updated privacy policy includes fresh examples and infographics that make it clearer what the corporation may and cannot do with personal information. Except for WhatsApp, the redrafted policies will be compatible with all Meta products.

Users of Meta’s products will begin receiving notifications today about the new privacy policies, which will take effect on July 26. While users may believe something has changed in the way apps like Facebook and Instagram collect data, the business claims that the amount of data it collects has not changed.

“Obviously, a huge part of the purpose is to make sure we meet our regulatory commitments first,” Sherman said. “But, more importantly, to ensure that people understand how our data is utilised – it’s not good for us if people are surprised by data practises.”

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