Facebook suspends thousands of apps

Anne Freier

In App Business. September 25, 2019

Facebook has suspended around 69,000 apps in the wake of the investigation into the Cambridge Analytica scandal.

In a blog post, the company admitted that data-sharing among apps was higher than previously indicated.

Facebook said that it now identifies apps by the number of users they have or much data they can access and also based on signals associated with an app’s abuse of its policies.

“Where we have concerns, we conduct a more intensive examination. This includes a background investigation of the developer and a technical analysis of the app’s activity on the platform. Depending on the results, a range of actions could be taken from requiring developers to submit to in-depth questioning, to conducting inspections or banning an app from the platform.”

The suspended apps belong to 400 developers. Not all of the apps were harmful or violated policies. In some cases, developers did not respond to Facebook’s request for more information and had to be suspended.

Where apps are banded completely this usually happens because of inappropriate data sharing, making data publicly available or violating policies.

In such cases, Facebook also identifies regulators and policymakers.

The company resorted to legal action against South Korean data analytics company Rankwave for failing to cooperate with an investigation and app makers LionMobi and JediMobi, for using their apps to spread malware on users’ phones.

Facebook added that it had rolled out several improvements to how it evaluates set policies for developers. It removed APIs, set stricter rules and has expanded its team to investigate bad players.