Facebook boss Sheryl Sandberg has jumped to the defence of the social media giant’s data privacy record, claiming it never shares users’ personal information with advertisers.
The company’s chief operating officer was speaking to BBC Breakfast, during the first UK and Ireland SMB Client Council summit, designed to woo small firms to advertise on the site.
She stressed: “Privacy is of the utmost concern and importance to Facebook and it is important for people who use Facebook to know that we are very protective of their data; they have control of it, they share it.
“We are able to personalise ads without sharing any of users’ private data with any advertisers.”
It is a message Facebook is very keen to get across; earlier this year UK vice-president Nicola Mendelsohn defended the site’s record on handling users’ personal data, claiming people are in charge of their own information.
Sandberg, who has also worked at Google and for Bill Clinton’s camaign team, also claimed the company ensures ads are targeted effectively. She added: “We make sure all ads are relevant for the people who are viewing them.”
Quizzed on the future direction of the business, Sandberg said: “[The term] online is becoming old fashioned because we are all connected all of the time. We are in the middle of the fastest adoption of disruptive technology the world has ever seen and that is the mobile phone.”
She also urged more women to get involved in business. “It’s really important that since women make up half of the population, women start having half the seats at tables where the decisions are made and that’s not where we are today.”
Sandberg claimed women could make “unbelievably effective” business and government leaders, as well as entrepreneurs.
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