Thursday, 16 August, 2018

Facebook wants your financial data to expand Messenger, says report

Mark Zuckerberg CEO of Facebook Facebook Wants Banks to Hand Over Your Financial Information Associated Press 6 Aug 2018
Ginger Lawrence | 06 August, 2018, 22:55

It's not clear if Facebook's attempts to obtain user financial data will be successful or not, but we'll likely find out in the coming months.

The social media giant has reportedly had talks with JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citigroup, and US Bancorp to discuss proposed features including fraud alerts and checking account balances via Messenger. "We're not using this information beyond enabling these types of experiences - not for advertising or anything else".

Facebook has asked large US banks to share financial information about their customers as it seeks to offer new services to users, according to The Wall Street Journal. A deeper integration with banks would also give Facebook another way to nudge users to shop on the platform. (JPM), Wells Fargo & Co.

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According to The Wall Street Journal (WSJ), the latest data partnership Facebook is pursuing could involve some of the US' biggest banking organizations. But after the Cambridge Analytica scandal and multiple other privacy scandals, even Facebook's current partners may not be willing to trust the company.

"Facebook has told banks that the additional customer information could be used to offer services that might entice users to spend more time on Messenger", according to the story, which also noted the data will not be used for ad targeting purposes or shared with third parties.

From Facebook's perspective, the company believes that more customer information means more targeted efforts at engaging its user base. Spokeswoman Elisabeth Diana has said "we don't use purchase data from banks or credit card companies for ads". Unless Facebook is able to reassure the banks that it either won't have direct access to the data itself, or that the data will never be used for advertising purposes, then the company may not succeed in convincing USA banks to share their customers data.