Sexual Orientation, Drug Use and Political Beliefs: What Can Be Determined Just from Facebook 'Likes'

#Internet

Wed, Mar 13th, 2013 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

According to a study on online privacy, the publicly available information behind what you have 'liked' on Facebook can be used to determine intimate details such as "sexual orientation, drug use and political beliefs."

The research into 58,000 Facebook users in the US found that sensitive personal characteristics about people can be accurately inferred from information in the public domain.

Researchers were able to accurately infer a Facebook user's race, IQ, sexuality, substance use, personality or political views using only a record of the subjects and items they had "liked" on Facebook — even if users had chosen not to reveal that information.

The study will reopen the debate about privacy in the digital age and raise fresh concerns about what information people share online.

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