Originally posted at Vice by Joseph Cox

Facebook Wants to ‘Normalize’ the Mass Scraping of Personal Data

Facebook wants to “normalize” the idea that large scale scraping of user data from social networks like its own is a common occurrence, as the company continues to face fallout from a leak of over 500 million Facebook users’ phone numbers.

Facebook’s position came to light in an internal email accidentally sent by a Facebook representative to a journalist at Dutch Publication DataNews. Facebook confirmed the authenticity of the email to Motherboard.

Under the heading “LONG-TERM STRATEGY,” the email reads that “Assuming press volume continues to decline [around the recent 500 million phone numbers leak], we’re not planning additional statements on this issue. Longer term, though, we expect more scraping incidents and that it’s important to both frame this as a broad industry issue and normalize the fact that this activity happens regularly.” The email adds that Facebook is planning to publish a blog post that talks about the company’s anti-scraping work…

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