Washington - A coalition of consumer and privacy advocates has filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) over Facebook’s recent changes to its privacy settings, arguing that consumers are now by default sharing more information publicly than they were before the switch. The Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC), along with the Center for Digital Democracy, American Library Association and the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse, were party to the complaint, which argues that the "changes violate user expectations, diminish user privacy, and contradict Facebook’s own representations."
The changes made to Facebook now automatically make public a user’s friends list, and pages of which they have become a ‘fan’.
"We’ve had productive discussions with dozens of organizations around the world about the recent changes and we ¹re disappointed that EPIC has chosen to share their concerns with the FTC while refusing to talk to us about them," Facebook spokesman Andrew Noyes told Wired.com.
"The new tools offer users the opportunity to decide on privacy with every photo, link or status update they wish to post, so the process of personalizing privacy on Facebook will continue."
The privacy groups are petitioning the FTC to compel Facebook to restore its previous privacy settings, provide greater control to users, and seek injunctive and compensatory relief from the company.