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Facebook Asks Banks For Your Data

Facebook is reacting to yet another controversy, this time inspired by a Wall Street Journal article that exposed the social media giant for reaching out to banks for user data, including transaction histories.

JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citigroup and US Bancorp have all been identified as having had conversations with Facebook about Messenger integration.

Elisabeth Diana, Facebook spokesperson, commented that the Wall Street Journal article accusing Facebook of asking the banks to “share detailed financial information about their customers, including card transactions and checking-account balances” wasn’t accurate.

She went on to say “Like many online companies with commerce businesses, we partner with banks and credit card companies to offer services like customer chat or account management,

“Account linking enables people to receive real-time updates in Facebook Messenger where people can keep track of their transaction data like account balances, receipts, and shipping updates.

“The idea is that messaging with a bank can be better than waiting on hold over the phone—and it’s completely opt-in.

“We’re not using this information beyond enabling these types of experiences—not for advertising or anything else.”

Such use of data is not unprecedented, with account linking already provided by PayPay, Citi in Singapore and American Express in the United States.

Facebook still needs to convince the broader public that it can be trusted with this kind of data and is hopinh its current privacy campaigns will boost user confidence.

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