Delaware Public Media

Delaware's junior senator questions Facebook founder over mishandling user data

Apr 10, 2018

Delaware’s junior Sen. Chris Coons (D-Delaware)  is voicing his concerns on how Facebook handles data.


Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg testified before senators on Capitol Hill Tuesday.

Zuckerberg said he’s sorry Facebook didn’t inform users sooner that their data was harvested by a company that helped President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign.

Coons said the company has made sweeping promises to address a variety of issues, but reality hasn’t matched up.

As an example, he says he woke up Tuesday to friends telling him about a fake Facebook account with his name. Coons said the fake account featured another senator’s family and was liked by Russian trolls.

“There doesn’t seem to have been as much follow up as would be called for," he said. "End of the day, policies aren’t worth the paper they’re printed on if Facebook doesn’t enforce them.”

He said the account was taken down after his office complained.

“But I’m left worried about what happens to Delawareans who don’t have these resources," he said. "It’s still possible to find Russian trolls operating in the platform, hate groups thrive in some areas of Facebook even though your policies prohibit hate speech and you’ve taken strong steps against extremism and terrorists.”

Zuckerberg said he hopes more content will be flagged by the social media company proactively as they develop more sophisticated technology. But he’s also hiring thousands of people to work on security and review questionable content.

Facebook users wanting to check whether their data was shared with Cambridge Analytica can go to the site’s help center while logged into their account.