Rumor: Facebook to switch from opt-out to opt-in, better protect personal data

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Facebook might just be close to a settlement with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) that would fundamentally change the way they treat their users, and their users' personal information.

According to people familiar with the talks, the settlement would require Facebook to obtain users' consent before making "material retroactive changes" to its privacy policies. That means that Facebook must get consent to share data in a way that is different from how the user originally agreed the data could be used.

Facebook -has been charged with misleading users about how private information was being handled -- making it public by default. Under this settlement, Facebook would switch from opt-out to opt-in, letting users decide what they want to share before sharing it, and be subject to audits for 20 years to ensure compliance (much as Google has recently agreed to, and Twitter to a lesser period).

Source: Wall Street Journal