How Facebook affects your Privacy decisions

Are you aware of how many applications access your personal information on Facebook? Check your applications permissions and ready for a surprise!

Old Facebook PermissionsFacebook continues to “improve” their design so that we can install applications without realizing that we allow access to personal information. In fact the access to our information and identity is the currency that Facebook uses for trading and that’s also what is driving its stock up or down. We shouldn’t be surprised that Facebook made through the new App Center another step forward in its efforts to expose personal information, without us noticing it.

New Facebook PermissionsA Single Button

The old Facebook design used two buttons (“Allow” and “Don’t Allow”) that automatically prompted you to make a decision. But in the new App Center, Facebook has chosen to use a single button. Now there’s no need for you to confirm anything or take any decision. It takes just one click and boom! Your personal information is sent to the application developer without you noticing.

The Tiny Gray Font

Facebook designers know that you are used to ignore small gray text on the page. You are conditioned to believe that the gray text is not important. This is why they chose gray text for permissions that you are ready to accept.

Hidden Info Symbol

In the past, Facebook made a detailed presentation of informations they made available to the applications. But in the new design they decided to hide that information. If you look carefully, there is a small question mark (“?”) that if you hover your mouse over it, will reveal the information that you are about to transmit to the application.

The Action Line

Designers know that your eyes will automatically focus on the main button and you will ignore everything that exists below this virtual line of action. Therefore, the new App Center hid details for permissions under this line of action.

Friendly Tone

In the new App Center, the designers at Facebook chose to hide the word “Permissions”. Instead of the title “Request for Permissions” and the “Allow” button, Facebook now sends you to a page full of colored images and a button called “Play Game”. This friendly tone is distracting your attention from the permissions you’re about to accept.


  1. foto nunta says:

    Da este formidabil, urasc facebook-ul si tot restul site-urilor efectiv facute ca sa ne patrunda in intimitate…Le folosesc dar sincer as vrea sa mai pot avea intimitatea de odata…Ultima gaselnita care intradevar m-a pus pe ganduri este cea a celor de la Google care iti ofera posibilitatea de a stoca GB intregi de date adica drive-ul lor…Mi se pare o expunere prea mare…la ce vor avea ei acces…la revedere ai totul transparent…

    • Daca ai date care preferi sa ramana private, nu trebuie sa le stochezi in cloud, pe serverele Google. Dar poate fi folositoare solutia, mai ales cand ai date legate de munca (prezentari, documente, aplicatii, etc) si back-up. Intr-adevar, si eu as fi preferat sa am mai multe optiuni in privinta intimitatii. Dar chiar daca nu ai conturi pe Facebook, Google si alte site-uri, calculatorul tau tot poate fi accesat din exterior. Ceea ce face datele de pe hard-ul tau la fel, sau chiar mai putin sigure decat in contul Google.

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