Did Facebook Secretly Steal Your Phone Contacts?

As I logged onto my Facebook account today I saw someone’s status, It said, ” Alert – All your phones contact numbers are now on Facebook…” I thought it was a preposterous idea, but I guess the joke was on me. Sure enough upon following the instructions, all of the people whose numbers I had stored in my phone were also on Facebook’s server. It was an alarming feature for me, so I canned it immediately. Here’s how you can check for yourself:

On the top right of the web browser click the “Accounts” tab. Go down and click “Edit Friends.” Now on the left hand side of that screen click the “Contacts” tab. Here are all your phone numbers – even friends who don’t have a Facebook account will have their contact listed here.

This is also something to keep in mind when sharing your telephone number with someone. They may have synchronized contacts and send your phone number to the Facebook server without even knowing it. As we all know from a discovery by Cambridge University last year – Facebook never deleted data, ever. Even if an account is deleted, Facebook stores that information infinitely on its servers, On the plus side though, if you do ever have your phone stolen, you can synchronize back up with your Facebook, and have all your contacts back. If Facebook keeps going the way it is, The Patriot Act may no longer be necessary. Just look to Facebook for all your worldwide espionage needs.

If having everyone’s privacy compromised seems like a high price to pay to store your contacts – you can stop Facebook from mining future contact data this way:

Follow the instructions about, and when you are on that page, on the right hand column click “this page.”

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