Responding to backlash, Zoom stops sharing user data with Facebook

Zoom Brand Photo
Zoom Brand Photo (Image credit: Zoom)

What you need to know

  • Zoom has updated its iOS app to stop sharing user data with Facebook.
  • The company was sharing device data when users used "Login with Facebook".
  • Even users without a Facebook account were having their data harvested.

Yesterday, it was discovered that the Zoom iOS app was sharing personal data with Facebook without user consent.

A report from Motherboard showed that, while enabling the Login with Facebook SDK into the app turns on this kind of data sharing, Zoom did not disclose this data collection to its users. Even worse, the company was sharing user analytics data to the Facebook Graph API even if that user did not have a Facebook account.

"As people work and socialize from home, video conferencing software Zoom has exploded in popularity. What the company and its privacy policy don't make clear is that the iOS version of the Zoom app is sending some analytics data to Facebook, even if Zoom users don't have a Facebook account, according to a Motherboard analysis of the app."

Zoom immediately faced a wave of backlash for its lack of transparency. Today, it appears that the company has responded to the situation by removing the "Login with Facebook" feature from its iOS app. In a statement to Motherboard the company says that, while the SDK did collect some data, it was not "personal".

"The data collected by the Facebook SDK did not include any personal user information, but rather included data about users' devices such as the mobile OS type and version, the device time zone, device OS, device model and carrier, screen size, processor cores, and disk space."

Zoom will still give users the option to sign in to the app using Facebook, but will now do so by requiring the user to log in through a web browser. The company says that the data collection was not intended, but an oversight in its desire to make logging into its app convenient for its users.

"We sincerely apologize for this oversight, and remain firmly committed to the protection of our users' data."

If you'd like to stop sharing data with Facebook, you can download the latest version of the Zoom iOS app from the App Store.

Joe Wituschek

Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.