Apple co-Founder Steve Wozniak urged Facebook users to delete their accounts over privacy concerns.
“I worry because you’re having conversations that you think are private. ... You’re saying words that really shouldn’t be listened to because you don’t expect it,” Wozniak said in an interview with TMZ on June 28 at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport. “But there’s almost no way to stop it. People think they have a level of privacy they don’t.”
“There are many different kinds of people, and some, the benefits of Facebook are worth the loss of privacy, but to many like myself, my recommendation is — to most people — is you should figure out a way to get off Facebook,” Wozniak added later in the interview.
Facebook has come under fire for a slate of controversies surrounding its handling of user data. The tech giant revealed last year that Cambridge Analytica, a data analytics firm, gained access to millions of Facebook users' data without their knowledge or consent.
“I’m worried about everything,” Wozniak said. “I don’t think we can stop it, though. ... I mean, they can measure your heartbeat with lasers now. They can listen to you with a lot of devices. Who knows if my cellphone’s listening right now?”
Critics have also expressed concern about Facebook sharing users' data with advertisers. More than 98 percent of Facebook’s 2017 revenue came from advertising, according to financial statements, and the data collected from users allows for targeted ads. Facebook CEO Mark ZuckerbergMark ZuckerbergTwo lawyers who filed suit challenging election results ordered to pay nearly 7K Hillicon Valley — Presented by Ericsson — DOJ unveils new election hacking charges State attorneys general launch probe into Instagram's impact on children, teens MORE has denied that the company sells users' data to advertisers.
Wozniak said Facebook users may be “liking” a post thinking that only their Facebook friends will see their clicks, but he alleged that information can go to advertisers.
“The trouble is that my like’s not going to you. In my head it is, but my like is going to the advertisers,” he said.
Wozniak suggested that Facebook and other social media sites should give users the option to pay a fee to protect their privacy.
“Why don’t they give me a choice? Let me pay a certain amount, and you’ll keep my data more secure and private than everybody else handing it to advertisers,” Wozniak said.