Facebook will reportedly hand over identity data of users suspected of hate speech – CNET


French user identity information could be handed over by Facebook. 

Graphic by Pixabay/Illustration by CNET

Facebook has reached an agreement with France to turn over identity information on users suspected of posting hate speech on the platform, Reuters reported Tuesday. Digital Affairs Minister Cedric O said he reached an agreement with the social media platform, according to the report.

Facebook has also been using artificial intelligence (AI) technology to combat the increasing problems of fake accounts, fake news and hate speech. Between Oct. 2018 and Mar. 2019, Facebook took down more than 3 billion fake accounts, estimating that around 5% of monthly active accounts are fake.

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The deal with France came after talks between French President Emmanuel Macron and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Reuters said, adding that Facebook already hands over identity data like IP addresses to French authorities for users suspected of terrorist activity. The hate speech deal was made in a meeting between Cedric O and Nick Clegg, Facebook head of global affairs, last week, the report said.

“It means that the judicial process will be able to run normally,” O told Reuters Tuesday. “It’s really very important, they’re only doing it for France.”

Facebook didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

The AI being used by the social media giant’s engineers is called self-supervised learning, and enables the tech behind the site to adapt faster to spotting new forms of hate speech.

“It’s really easy to lose hope, to pack up and go home,” Mike Schroepfer, Facebook chief technology officer, said in May. “But we can’t do that. We’re here to bring a better future to people with technology.”


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