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Senator Roger Wicker questions Facebook CEO during congressional hearing

Photo courtesy of Senator Roger Wicker.

U.S. Senator Roger Wicker, who serves as Chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, Innovation, and the Internet, attended a joint hearing of the Senate Commerce Committee and Senate Judiciary Committee featuring Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.  The hearing coincides with reports that personal information from tens of millions of Facebook users was collected and sold in violation of Facebook’s terms of service.

Wicker asked Zuckerberg about Facebook’s reported collection of call and text histories on Android phones as well as its treatment of minors who use the company’s apps.

“We have an app called Messenger for sending messages to your Facebook friends, and that app offers people an option to sync their text messages into the messaging app and to make it so that, so basically, so you can have one app where it has both your texts and your Facebook messages in one place,” Zuckerberg said. “We also allow people the option… to opt-in.”

Senator Wicker followed up with a question about Facebook’s ability to track users after they log off the platform. He also asked the CEO if he believed there should be consistent privacy protections across the entire internet ecosystem based on the type of consumer information being collected, used, or shared.

Recently, Senator Wicker has said that the internet and its companies have been a driving force of the modern economy over the past two or three decades. However, he warns against overregulating the internet.

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