According to recent reports, Meta has been sued by a group of anonymous plaintiffs who had filed their taxes in the year 2020 using H&R Block. They have accused the company of violating of trust and privacy of the users. An investigation done by Markup has revealed that the companies including H&R block, TaxSlayer, TaxAct, etc have passed on their users’ private data to Meta. Read the entire article to learn more about this news piece.
About violating user’s privacy
According to various reports, it has been claimed that the companies transfer Meta data through a tool called Pixel. This tool is nothing but a code that helps the company know of its users’ activity and also select customers that can be targeted for online advertising. The tax filing services have already changed their setting in pixel so that nothing gets passed on.
In a statement given to Engadget, when this news came out, Meta claimed that advertisers are banned from sharing any kind of private information and that it has an automatic system that filters out personal information sent through Pixel.
The plaintiffs acknowledged in their complaint (PDF, courtesy of The Markup) that Meta does require businesses that use Pixel to “have lawful rights to collect, use and share” user data before providing the company with any information. However, the plaintiffs argue that Meta makes no effort to enforce that rule and instead relies on a “broken honor system” that has resulted in “repeated documented violations.”
The lawsuit that has been filed against Meta is asking for an active class action for people who have used the apps, mentioned above. The services have not been named as defendants in the case.
In an interview with Markup, Marshal Hoda, part of the legal team that will represent the plaintiffs said that Meta had failed in protecting user privacy and received sensitive financial information, without consent.
“Some kinds of information are sacrosanct,” said Hoda.
Meta is the parent company of Facebook and also owns Instagram and Whatsapp. Headed by Mark Zuckerberg, the company aims to make its mark on the world by helping people connect in the best way possible using its digital services. The company aims to advance the digital world so much so that people do not feel away from their loved ones even though they are physically in different places. It just wants to improve the lives of people and make them more convenient.