Facebook raises row over revealing user's location
Controversy shrouds Facebook over revealing user's location in a new feature that it has launched.india Updated: Aug 20, 2010 17:40 IST
Controversy shrouds Facebook over revealing user's location in a new feature that it has launched.
Called Facebook Places, the application uses satellite tracking technology to permit people to ‘check in’ their current location and share it with friends.
But critics voiced concern that the facility exposes users to the risk of burglary, stalking and harassment, reports the Daily Mail.
They also asserted that many users did not fully understand the site’s privacy options and were clueless about potential dangers.
The service is currently available in the US but the company plans to extend the feature worldwide.
Eric King of Privacy International, a human rights watchdog, said though Facebook defended the feature by saying the information was only shared with friends, users often had certain ‘friends’ they knew little about.
"You are essentially telling people that you are not at home, that you are in this bar, or in this area. This could mean you end up burgled and at worst then people you don’t want knowing where you are can very easily find you," King added.
However, Facebook insisted users would have to agree to a number of clauses before the option was enabled.
The feature comes close on the heels of Google boss Eric Schimdt's warning that young people might have to change their identities in future because they are giving away their private lives on social networking sites.