Can Facebook Secure Your Information?

Facebook has been engulfed in a legal battle as a result of the Cambridge Analytica scandal. The scandal emanated from the time Facebook allowed Aleksandr Kogan to integrate his personality quiz app with the social media platform.

It all started in 2013 when Facebook, in a bid to open its platform and offer users a more exciting experience, allowed 3rd-party app developers to integrate their apps with Facebook’s architecture. This new access to personal details of Facebook users led to Aleksandr Kogan integrating his personality quiz app with the Facebook app.

 This event would later come back to hunt Facebook as it seemed Kogan had other motives than just predicting human behavior through social media.
Realizing the potential risk that giving 3rd-party app developers access to confidential information without providing consent came with, Facebook announced that same year that they were changing the entire platform to drastically limit the way apps could access user data. What this meant was that apps like Kogan’s app could no longer ask for data about a user’s friends unless those friends also authorized the app.
It wasn’t until 2015 that it was uncovered by a journalist at the Guardian UK that Kogan had shared personal details of over 80 million Facebook users with Cambridge Analytica through his app. This is an outright breach of Facebook’s policies as developers aren’t allowed to share data without people’s consent. This led to a ban of Kogan’s app from Facebook. Facebook demanded that Kogan and Cambridge Analytica formally certify that they had deleted all improperly acquired data. Although they provided these certifications, it turned out that the data was never deleted, and Facebook never bothered to investigate.
All of this might have been swept under the radar but for the unexpected victory of Donald Trump over Hillary Clinton in America’s 2015 election. Following the disappointing American election of 2016, Americans have been searching for answers to understand how and why Trump won the election; from claims that Russia interfered in the elections to claims that Trump’s campaign team might have colluded with Russian government officials.
It is this search for answers that has landed Facebook in hot waters. The social media company has found itself in a legal battle for breach of contract and trust as it was found out that Cambridge might have used data obtained Kogan personality quiz app to help influence the outcome of the US election which brought Trump to power.
Facebook has been grilled by the American Congress and while it denies any wrongdoings, they have placed the blame squarely on Cambridge Analytica for misusing the data received through Kogan’s App. Cambridge Analytica has unleashed a counterattack against such claims that it misused the Facebook data, stating that they are a victim of misunderstanding and inaccurate reporting. Kogan himself also claims that Facebook has realized, “It was convenient to point the finger at a single entity”, when in fact the social media giant knew that its data was being misused on such a grand scale.
This mess has led to a lot of people questioning the ability of Facebook to protect their data, thereby leading to a Delete Facebook campaign. Notable names like Brian Acton, the co-founder of WhatsApp, and Elon Musk, the billionaire entrepreneur, were reported to have deleted their personal and company Facebook pages respectively (no jokes).

     In the aftermath of this scandal, Facebook has taken steps to stop 3rd-party data for targeting by disabling ‘Partner Categories’, a form of advertising targeting which allowed prominent third-party data aggregators like Experian and Acxiom to provide clients with offline data like purchasing activity to inform ad targeting. They also plan to introduce an Un-send Message feature for Facebook Messenger after people realized Facebook was deleting Zuckerberg’s messages.
Taking their actions further, Facebook has finally banned Cambridge Analytica and Trump’s campaign operations team from using Facebook.
The waters have been quite muddy for Facebook since this scandal broke out and it appears they are making genuine efforts to ensure that they regain public trust.

However, you can’t help but wonder if this is too little, too late, and if we are witnessing the beginning of the end of the era of the biggest social media platform that is Facebook.

Let’s Talk BBNaija ”Double Wahala” Strategy

 

Strategy is a word that is often used in the Big Brother House worldwide, and that hasn’t changed in this season of Big brother ‘’Double Wahala’’.  Although it seems this year, the reason is for a lack of it.

Using Efe as a case study we will explore the different elements of a good strategy.

Efe understood Nigerians connected to  Grass to Grace Stories and used that to his advantage to strategically win the last season of Big Brother Naija ‘’See Gobe’’.

However, this season, the housemates just seem to be taking each day as it comes. There is no overarching strategy. Why are we so sure? Because there are 5 key elements that make a strategy good enough:

  1. The Product: The first step in the right direction is an understanding of the product. What exactly are you selling? What is the aim? What are you trying to communicate? Perception is reality. In Efe’s case, the product was an idea, a perception. Efe understood who he was and what being the most influential housemate meant and he used that to be the best. He sold us ‘the Warri boy brand’, his popular catchphrase – ‘based on logistics’ which we all bought into. When you understand your product, you easily can get people to buy into it.
  2. Target market/audience: Now that you know your product, the next phase is understanding who this product is tailored for. Who would buy this product? Why would they buy it? It is important to realize that no product is made for everybody. Everybody cannot be your target market. Not everybody liked Efe. Focus on the people you want. What do they like? Where are they? How do they behave? What are they currently saying? What would spur them to take action? Once you can answer these questions, you are halfway there. Ensure you back the answers with facts. Many Nigerians easily identify with the street, the hustle, and dreams. Efe played the role well and communicated in pidgin most of the time and literally tore his shirt in one of the episodes, even though he graduated with a first class in economics. Efe understood that the average Nigerian who watches BBnaija is young, loves entertainment believes in himself and is not necessarily born with a silver spoon. The first impression he gave Nigerians lasted in the heart of Nigerians. Your target audience is the most important factor in strategizing, they determine your profitability.
  3. Map out your plan: Your plan is often based on the insights you get while understanding your target market. You need to map out your plan and how to go about, if need be adjust the plan but don’t deviate from your plan. This plan would help create a sticky brand! This needs to be communicated at every point. He stood out and his plan was clear from the moment he stepped in.
  4. Competition: The greatest mistake you can make in marketing is ignoring your competition, you need to understand the strength and weakness of your competition, Efe knew his competition in the house and he was able to stay ahead of them by leveraging on their weakness. Map out ideas that will beat your competition hands down.
  5. Community: Build a community of people who share your objectives and you can work with, Efe had a great community, asides leveraging his warri roots, his team gained the support of celebrities, who began to advocate for him and resulted in ‘Team Efe’ trending on social media. When you have a loyal community marketing becomes effective. He found a great team in Marvis and Bisola, who rooted for him even though they were competitors.

BBNaija See Gobe was mega inspiring, we can’t wait to see the outcome of ‘’Double Wahala’’. If you think any housemate has a winning strategy, tell us.