Share / Print
Opinion

A 'Dangerous Situation' at Facebook Could Get 'Much Worse' If We Don't Take 'Immediate Steps'

By Vasant Dhar

Vasant Dhar opinion research headshot article

Recent events require a careful examination of the risks social media platforms entail to individuals and society and a plan for dealing with these risks.

Social media platforms that can be used as weapons by malicious parties need to be regulated. As we process the details unfolding around what truly happened at Cambridge Analytica and Facebook, it becomes increasingly apparent that we have allowed a dangerous situation to develop, but that things could get much worse unless we take immediate steps to address the larger risks associated with social media platforms.

Recent events require a careful examination of the risks social media platforms entail to individuals and society and a plan for dealing with these risks. The statement by the head of Cambridge Analytica that "we just put information into the bloodstream of the Internet, and then watch it grow, give it a little push every now and then" -- is a chilling but accurate metaphor for a new kind of "digital infection" to which we are susceptible, without adequate mechanisms for protection.

We need a plan to guard against platforms and personal data being misused by malicious parties. Finance provides a good roadmap which I outline below.

Read the full article as published by CNBC

___
Vasant Dhar is a Professor of Information Systems.