Social media giant Facebook made some unintentional news in early February as part of a major article on the company in Wired, entitled “Inside the Two Years That Shook Facebook -- And the World.” The piece was primarily about the 2016 election, among other things, and recent revelations that foreign operatives had manipulated social networks like Facebook in order to swing the outcome of the election. It also examines how Facebook was able to find two leakers who told a Gizmodo reporter about its news operations in 2016.
But, buried deep inside the massive, 11,000-word article was a revelation that shone a light on Facebook’s internal privacy controls.
From a Business Insider story on the event:
“To corporate giants like Facebook, leaks to rivals or the media are a cardinal sin. That notion was clear in a new Wired story about Facebook's rocky time over the last two years. The story talks about how Facebook was able to find two leakers who told a Gizmodo reporter about its news operations. But one source for the Wired story highlighted just how concerned employees are about how their company goes after leakers. According to the story, the source, a current Facebook employee, asked a Wired reporter to turn off his phone so Facebook wouldn't be able to use location tracking and see that the two were close to each other for the meeting.”
Two things to mention here: Clearly, Facebook is taking its leak controls seriously. But also, its employees fully understand how to avoid detection and the leaks continue.
Still, none of this is a surprise.
In today’s compliance-focused business environment, enterprises need to make sure they know what is being said and done in their name -- and that increasingly means making use of technology tools to monitor activity. The rules of privacy are changing, particularly when it comes to employers and their employees, and the policies that Facebook has apparently implemented to address its problem with leaks will soon become commonplace across all industries.