Facebook is testing a new feature for all the photos and videos in your account. This new feature is basically a tool to transfer a photo directly from Facebook to your Google drive. You can port them using an encrypted transfer. But for now, it is just being tested in Ireland.
You might wonder why they chose Ireland to test this feature; it is simply because Facebook’s headquarters is stationed there. Since it is just in the prototype phase where they are adjusting the feature, it is tweaking it to make it a useful tool for everybody. This feature might come to light in 2020 for everyone around the world.
It is also speculated that this portability feature will not just be restricted to Google. Facebook might add other storage services in the future. How that pans out, we can witness that with time. The data transfer project which was started in 2018 developed a code which helped Facebook to come up with this feature. This data transfer project is a collaborative effort to get two platforms linked in terms of portability of data. This project is actually backed by tech giants like Apple, Google, Microsoft, Twitter and of course, Facebook.
The idea is to move data easily over different service providers whenever they want. The project is dedicated to building a common framework through which data can be transferred with ease. Facebook published a white paper in September which explained “clear rules” and to the kind of data that can be transferred and data that cannot be transferred, to see who would be responsible for secure data transfers as it is transferred to the various service providers.
Even though it sounds like a good way to make our lives easier, there is still the underlying threat about regulations with legislators and agencies around the world who depend on user data. This is also one of the reasons why Facebook is keen on bringing this portability tool into action. Being able to port data easily is indeed handy for people, but we can just undermine the fact that Facebook has had a history of collecting data on its users without their knowledge or consent. So even if you port the data to a storage service like Google, Facebook will retain the data with its database too. So you might be transferring pictures to your Google drive, but Facebook already has the data you upload, that is not going anywhere.
Facebook uses this data- like the pictures you upload so that it can curate and target ads to your account. So what Facebook already knows about you stays with Facebook irrespective of where you port your data. The porting tool is designed in such a way that Facebook will always have your data. Unless you decide to delete your account, your data with Facebook is not going anywhere.
Users will have no control over the kind of data the portability tool collects or interprets. It does not offer control over the data it processes when users use tools like social plug-ins and tracking pixels. The targeted ad businesses have boomed because of the data Facebook provides them by processing and analysing the personal data of its users. Therefore, this portability feature does not seem like it is going to be a serious threat. Not at least for now.
Facebook wrote in the paper published in September “we hope this product can help advance the conversations on the privacy questions we identified in our white paper. We know we can’t do this alone, so we encourage other companies to join the data transfer project to expand options for people and continue to push data portability innovation forward.”Source