Privacy Blog

"Friends don’t let friends get spied on.' – Richard Stallman, President of the Free Software Foundation and longtime advocate of privacy in technology.

Facebook’s new Portal In-Home Hardware is Simply another Tool for Collecting Your Personal Data and Selling It for Advertising Purposes

This shouldn’t surprise anyone.

An article by Casey Newton in TheVerge web site points out the real reason Facebook has introduced a piece of hardware called the Portal. Like all the other services from Facebook, this one is deigned to invade your privacy, collect information about you, your income, your hobbies, your family, and more. That information will then be sold by Facebook to anyone who wishes to pay for it, contributing a lot of money to Facebook’s profits.

Why are these people smiling while being spied upon?

Question: When your personal information is sold by a corporation, shouldn’t you receive a large percentage of the revenue?

In an article by Kurt Wagner, who was briefed (twice) by Facebook executives:

Portal doesn’t have ads, but data about who you call and data about which apps you use on Portal can be used to target you with ads on other Facebook-owned properties.

“Portal voice calling is built on the Messenger infrastructure, so when you make a video call on Portal, we [Facebook] collect the same types of information (i.e. usage data such as length of calls, frequency of calls) that we collect on other Messenger-enabled devices. We may use this information to inform the ads we show you across our platforms. Other general usage data, such as aggregate usage of apps, etc., may also feed into the information that we use to serve ads,” a spokesperson said in an email.

In other words, Facebook’s new Portal device is a spy in your living room.

You can read Kurt Wagner’s revealing article at

Categories: Online Privacy & Security

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