Leaked Facebook documents reveal Apple threatened to remove the app

Facebook warns that 50,000 may have been victims of spyware

image: wikimedia

Leaked Facebook documents reveal that Apple threatened to remove the app 

Frances Haugen, a former Facebook employee in the US, was a data scientist with the social network giant, but has now turned whistleblower. Ms Haugen has obtained and released thousands of pages of internal Facebook documents.

Earlier this month, Haugen gave evidence before the US Senate, where she was quizzed about her views on the danger that Facebook actually presents. She has claimed that, among other things, the platform has been guilty of fuelling misinformation and leaving children open to harm.

Today, Monday, October 25, she is facing MP’s in the House of Commons. Ministers will be questioning and scrutinising her views as the British government targets a clampdown on content that is deemed harmful online.

Among the documents obtained by Ms Haugen were ones that clearly showed the anger of Facebook’s employees towards the social network’s alleged incitement of violence on the platform. Others revealed how the company had been threatened by Apple, which was going to remove both the Facebook and Instagram apps from their store amid ongoing concerns about online abuse.

This threat apparently came two years ago from the technology giant. They had voiced fears that the platform was being used by unscrupulous people as a market to trade and sell maids. According to internal Facebook documents that were seen by the Associated Press, Apple cited pictures of maids and their biographic details.

Apple reportedly rescinded its threat one week later after Facebook took action and disabled around 1,000 accounts from their platform. Even so, AP has claimed that accounts can still be located offering “khadima”, or “maids” in Arabic. In these accounts, users can browse images of Africans and South Asians posing, along with price lists to ‘purchase’ them.

A statement from Facebook was released in which they stated that the problem of maid abuse was being taken very seriously. “We prohibit human exploitation in no uncertain terms”, they said.

Adding, “We’ve been combating human trafficking on our platform for many years, and our goal remains to prevent anyone who seeks to exploit others from having a home on our platform”, as reported by news.sky.com.


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Written by

Chris King

Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at editorial@euroweeklynews.com