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Facebook using people’s phones to listen in, says professor

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Facebook could be listening in on people’s conversations all of the time, an expert has claimed.

The app might be using people’s phones to gather data on what they are talking about, it has been claimed.

Facebook says that its app does listen to what’s happening around it, but only as a way of seeing what people are listening to or watching and suggesting that they post about it. 

The feature has been available for a couple of years, but recent warnings from Kelli Burns, mass communication professor at the University of South Florida, have drawn attention to it.

Professor Burns has said that the tool appears to be using the audio it gathers not simply to help out users, but might be doing so to listen in to discussions and serve them with relevant advertising. She says that to test the feature, she discussed certain topics around the phone and then found that the site appeared to show relevant ads.

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This makes me glad I uninstalled the Facebook apps from my phone. It also makes me believe this is the reason why those apps (Facebook app and Facebook's Messenger app) would automatically start so often after using Greenify to stop them from running.

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I am glad that Google Play store will tell you want permissions an app wants to use on first install or before an update. There are some now that will forever be locked into the version I'm at because I won't grant the permissions.

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Agreed. I wish we had better control of apps auto-starting. From what I've seen, most things want root to change that sort of setting.

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