Getting All Up In Your Facebook

Facebook is once again the subject of unwanted publicity concerning its failure to protect user privacy. This time the publicity concerns allegations that Facebook is leaking user information – acquired via some of its most popular apps – to advertising and Internet tracking services. That’s a problem for Facebook for lots of reasons. First, there are basic privacy concerns. What are users’ “reasonable expectations” about the privacy of their personal information? The leak may give rise to tort liability. But Facebook also makes promises about privacy protection. And if the leaks are inconsistent with those promises, that give rise to breach of contract claims. Facebook is already a defendant in a class action suit over its privacy policies. I’m not sure if the new revelations will result in new filings, or just be added to what’s out there. But this is probably not the last word.