Social Media Sites Can Learn Lots About You Even if You Are Not a Member

#Privacy

Tue, Oct 7th, 2014 10:00 by capnasty NEWS

Wired reports on a study which determined that, by using "state-of-the-art prediction algorithms," social media sites would be able to gather a significant amount of information about non-members, down to sexual orientation.

Because they couldn’t get their hands on data from the likes of Facebook or LinkedIn, the researchers studied publicly available data archived from an older social network, Friendster. They found that if Friendster had used certain state-of-the-art prediction algorithms, it could have divined sensitive information about non-members, including their sexual orientation. “At the time, it was possible for Friendster to predict the sexual orientation of people who did not have an account on Friendster,” says David Garcia, a postdoctoral researcher with Switzerland’s ETH Zurich university, who co-authored the study.

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