Last week, Facebook announced their in-home, voice-activated speaker gadget called Portal in order to compete with rivals Amazon, Apple, and Google.
As soon as the device was announced, there were many questions regarding security and privacy as Why should anyone trust Facebook that they should put Facebook video cameras and microphones inside their home because this year has been a really bad year for Facebook regarding security and privacy issues.
It was reported last week that Facebook will only be able to collect call log data which includes whom you called and when you called etc. and that’s all the data what Facebook gathers from Messenger too. However, this is not true.
“Portal voice calling is built on the Messenger infrastructure, so when you make a video call on Portal, we collect the same types of information (i.e. usage data such as length of calls, the frequency of calls) that we collect on other Messenger-enabled devices. We may use this information to inform the ads we show you across our platforms. Other general usage data, such as aggregate usage of apps, etc., may also feed into the information that we use to serve ads”
This gives Facebook an immense advantage of users owning a Facebook device in their home as it would help the company by providing data for ad-targeting.
This isn’t what was told at the launch event but according to the current statement from Facebook Executive, this data can be used for ad-targeting but the fact that Portal doesn’t run ads so, technically it can be used for ad-targeting but on other Facebook apps most probably.
That is exactly why many people had concerns about Portal in the first place as everyone is concerned about their privacy and their data and the company hasn’t been able to explain exactly about what data it collects and how that data is used by the company.
So, it’s natural to see people concerned over owning a Facebook equipped microphone and video camera device inside your house.