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Facebook Removes Advertising Partner From Instagram That Saved Stories and Location Data

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Following the Federal Trade Commission's announcement that Facebook will pay a fine of $5 billion in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal, the company has pulled marketing company Hyp3r from Instagram's ad platform. According to a report, this development comes after Business Insider learned that the agency has been amassing massive amounts of data, which is in violation of the social network's rules.

According to a Business Insider report, Hyp3r reportedly exploited a "security lapse" that let it collect specific locations of "millions" of public posts and violated terms of service by saving public Stories and automatically scraping data from public profiles. While the company did not collect any private information, it still resulted in detailed profiles of users that Hyp3r did not have permission to generate.

Business Insider further alleged that Hyp3r flaunted Facebook's privacy changes in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal. According to them, it privately developed a system that could find a way around Facebook's restrictions and scoop up Instagram info, despite publicly welcoming restrictions on location tools and other features.

Hyp3r chief Carlos Garcia has maintained that its marketing system is compliant with consumer privacy regulations and social network Terms of Services, according to Endgadget, whose report also added that Garcia maintained the company never viewed private content, although that's not entirely true when the company could view Stories after the usual 24-hour period. A Facebook spokesperson, however, said Hyp3r violated policies. Facebook on their part has taken steps to prevent similar data scraping, requiring logins for access to location pages and fixing the security lapse.