What Personal Data do companies like Facebook and Google know about us?

It’s knows where you born, who’s almost all of your relatives, What school You were visiting, College, you’re working place. It knows your friends, it knows your hobbies, what you like, what you don’t like, your political preferences. It’s even know your dreams, because a lot of people very curious about their dreams and try to search the web, to see what it could mean. And they also probably know your sexual life, people love to search sex and talk about sex. And they know about your health status and health of your relatives. And today Zuckerberg told everyone, thans Facebook also analyzing all you Public conversations. They can search for any word you’ve ever written. How can we get the shure that they not analyzing and storing all private conversation. They almost completely have your psychological portrait.
You can Rule the world with this information. This is dream of any Secret Agency.
And it’s not just Facebook.

Someone knows how Facebook makes money on WhatsApp? How they can make money if they don’t sell your private conversations to advertisements agencies. Now they store WhatsApp conversations for almost hundred percent. Because they have now FREE backup also your WhatsApp profile, on their server. We can assume that most of the people officially agree to backup their information with Facebook.
It’s so tempting for Facebook, to have all this information and don’t use it :slight_smile:

Sorry to ask this, but does FB know other things than what is posted on FB? I’m surprised to see my phone “know” things about me. I’ve been using a “private/secure browser lately and my phone seems really impartial which is a total relief.

If you’ve installed any Facebook app without removing default permissions, it now has all of the information stored in your contacts, at a minimum. Meaning, no matter how hard I might try to not give Facebook my information, if a friend with the app has my name, number, birthday, address, etc in their contact file, Facebook has it.

Does this include my browsing the internet? It seems FB ads know what stores I have browsed in- creepy!

@healthyswimmer if you wanted to know download your account informations from facebook. It will answer your question. Go to settings—general—manage account—download a copy of your facebook account. Basically Facebook has all the informations about you and your contacts.

Mark Zuckerberg Testimony: Senators Question Facebook’s Commitment to Privacy

(Part of the article)

‘I think that may be what this is all about … your right to privacy.’

Senator Richard J. Durbin, Democrat of Illinois, zeroed in on the issue at the heart of Facebook’s troubles, asking Mr. Zuckerberg whether he would be comfortable sharing the name of the hotel he stayed in last night or if he would be comfortable sharing the names of the people he has messaged this week.

“No. I would probably not choose to do that publicly here,” Mr. Zuckerberg said.

“I think that may be what this is all about,” Mr. Durbin said. “Your right to privacy. The limits of your right to privacy. And how much you give away in modern America in the name of, quote, connecting people around the world.”

— Deborah Solomon

If the founder of facebook was uncomfortable in revealing his private informations, the users felt that way too. So many privacy scandals and apologies to make it better the next time. I think we have enough of that. We need to regain our private data. I think the way forward is well crafted legislation.

Facebook actually never sells any information to advertisers. The advertisers choose which audience they want to target, and Facebook shows to that audience without sharing the user information. The advertising part of Facebook is private.

The issue is that Facebook gives away our most private information for free, to potentially anyone, without us knowing. For example, any app you’ve used or connected to Facebook has all the super private infor about not just you, but also all of your “friends”. And then all of your “friends” or even the public see things about you that you never intended to share. For example Facebook automatically takes your location whenever you post, and without asking you automatically shares it with everyone who can potentially see the post. Another example is when you like a page, all of your friends are told what you’ve liked! And sometimes things are not just shared with friends, but also friends of friends. Facebook has almost zero respect for privacy. Rather than connecting friends with what they want to share, it’s a surveillance system that shares information indiscriminately, intentionally causing harm to its own users.

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Data harvesting, combining, enriching and reselling occurs everywhere in a global market that is mostly hidden to regular internet users (See also: Privacy is fundamental to Humane Tech (and Democracy)! )

Though all of the attention is on Facebook, probably the biggest player in this regard is Google (has probably gigabytes of data on just you), but almost every big tech player is involved in this in some way or other. Information is currency… money and power.

Facebook and others don’t need to sell the data for it to be profitable. They create incredibly powerful tools for very detailed profiling and targeting. This allows advertisers to be very specific in placing their ads, saving them money and increasing effectiveness (click-through rates, conversion, etc.) at the same time.

They do this by designing queries, such as:

  • Display this ad to people in this region
  • Who are left/right leaning
  • And are in this age group and gender
  • And who are having this mindset and medical affliction
  • And are most likely to buy muy product in the next 3 months
  • etcetera

It gets incredibly detailed.

Action point: We should collect a list of what kinds of data/knowledge is collected

It would be great to make people aware of the pervasiveness of their privacy invasion, and much more willing to act upon it. Maybe good sites already exist that offer this information.

Also good examples of how this can be used in other ways than just targeting ads (you rarely hear proper talk about this). Like:

  • Not being able to get health insurance, or at much higher cost, because your life expectancy and health record have been compiled.
  • Being rejected for a job application before getting a chance to have a personal chat with HRM, because of some profile information that the company dislikes. And not having the reason of rejection disclosed to you.
  • Consuming fake news and targeted propaganda without ever becoming aware of it.
  • When social credit systems arrive (and they may already exist behind the scenes) miss out of all kinds of benefits in society, because of a low-credit score, calculated by an algorithm from your data profile.
  • etcetera…

Data collected on users by: ( a lot and more than what you think. )

  1. Google- Google How to download Google data—click --download you data-Google account help-google.-----download your data------sign in your g-mail account----manage you data----- next-------file type (ex. zip)-----send download via (ex, e-mail )----create archived, (it takes time but google will inform via email)

2, Facebook- open you FB account ----go to setings—general----manage account----download copy of your facebook account.

See also these earlier posts:

But this still does not answer the question how they make money from WhatsApp, If they Don’t analyze users conversations.
And actually they sell “information” about you.
Because if I’m advertiser and need to find the group of white people around 30, Married with Children, healthy, who’s going to vote for Democrats and I can add many more parameters. For Facebook it will be very easy to find this group of people and sell me this information.

It’s all data so sooner or later it will be in bad hands. I am totalitarian dictator, with one simple search through this data I can find my all present political political enemies. Even more, deep analyzing user’s profile I can find even my future potential enemies. active people who can lead the people and lead them. In one evening you can arrest all those who will oppose dictatorship, and who in their active position can bring problems for dictator

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And I think the original name of the topic it more accurate. It’s much easier to Answer The question What they don’t know about us. The answer to this question will be much much much shorter

Hi @Georgy! Thx. I changed title. While I may be more accurate and short, now its more useful for CHT. (pls PM if you’d like to discuss)

WhatsApp is just for metadata collection to add to the big pile, I guess. Also the app reads your contact list, from which you can construct social graphs. Note that they may (no easy way to check) still read message content. Probably URL’s that you send also become part of the metadata when WA fetches the info to construct the URL preview.

PS Gmail is the most used mail messenger. Here you have your message content parsed and analysed.

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I think when you installing Facebook it’s also have access to your contact. Yeah of course we can consume that some of the people who have WhatsApp don’t have Facebook. But are those people worth $ 19 billion? Because this is how much Facebook pay for it. It’s probably cost a lot to keep it alive.
When Corporate America tell Main Street don’t worry we going to handle it it’s me and Main Street supposed to start to worry.

As soon as you company start trading on Wall Street, you only worrying about profits. Each quarter you supposed to show that companie is growing. And investor don’t really care how you going to do it but you supposed to show the grow.
When Trump becomes president a lot of people thinking that Wall Street will go down, because he’s going to bring a lot of instability. But the Wall Street is up because they only care about themselves, Donald is really good to them he is removing regulations lowering the taxes. If for Example, tomorrow he says slavery returns, Wall Street going to celebrate with record highs.

You can’t fight all of them at once, we need to start with one, brake one, then break the other ones

Sure they are worth 19 Billion $$… Just look at the revenue FB creates. Also WA could (but I don’t know if they do, but Google does) get much more info than just the metadata, like:

  • Count your steps, step speed, using the gyrometer, then measure activity, health
  • Detect mental health issues by the way you hold your phone, typing style, etc.
  • Detect whether you are in a car or not
  • Detect proximity of other devices, calculate friend networks from it

There is a cool open-source app that lets you see how psycho profiling works. Its called Data Selfie… watch the video.

Note you are also secretly tracked by ultrasound software embedded in apps, TV’s and other devices! Sounds unbelievable, far-fetched… yet it is true and happily applied for shady purposes (there are also good applications).


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You’re absolutely right they can collect a lot of data even without analyzing conversations.
But I think they could collect all this data with Facebook up.
I don’t know, maybe you’re right, but I don’t trust them. Cuz like I sad it’s so tempting to have all those conversations on their servers and not to analyze all this data

Yes, I am glad you brought up Google @aschrijver. They might be the worst offender. They track a lot more than anybody could possibly imagine. And they have tried to go after medical data, just like Facebook.

I have done research, and it seems like the root of their love of data-harvesting is not just money or ad-rev, it is a bit existential. If you read Nicholas Carr’s "The Shallows,’ there is an excellent chapter called ‘The Church of Google.’ Seems like on a high level (I am talking founder level) they genuinely want to redesign humanity and life as we know it. To collect and analyze everything, to merge people with machines as a superior species, and obviously, rule that new world. :)) If it sounds cuh-razy, it’s because it is. Also, unfortunately, it is factual.

So of course they want to move fast and break things. Because the things that they are breaking are not their own lives, it’s other people’s lives and data (and even physical) integrity.

Personally, I am mostly bothered by the existential damage and the hubris. Who do they think they are to proclaim that they are in charge of MY future? Nobody.

And Google is more pervasive than Facebook. Say, you quick Facebook. A pain in the arse but fine. But Google is everywhere.

And the internet of things? There are new companies whose business models are based on harvesting data of guest wi-fi logins, etc. etc. to track people in the physical world. And those handy new digital billboards that I see every day? They all have cameras and they track bypassing mobile devices.

Yikes, if you asked me.


Wow, that is scary stuff! In the video on AI revolution I posted, there is mention of them building a 100 million server capacity just for their AI DeepMind.

BTW They are also on this forum in the form of Google Analytics.

The billboards with camera’s are also introduced in The Netherlands on train stations (company Exterion). They run software to gauge your emotion and determine your gender + age, but could easily be extended with facial recognition.
I take action by calling the rail company Nederlandse Spoorwegen, as well as advertisers… every time I wait for the train I do this. Positive reactions so far, camera’s are turned off, they say, but no way to tell. So now asking for a physical cover over them. Pff, what a world :slight_smile:

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