POSTED: Friday, September 30, 2011 - 12:06pm
UPDATED: Friday, September 30, 2011 - 12:15pm
NBC NATIONAL NEWS — An Australian technologist discovered that Facebook is collecting information about your Internet visits even after you've logged out of their site, and lawmakers here want to investigate.
When you log out of Facebook and visit any of nearly a million sites with a "like" button.
That site sends a message to Facebook that you've been there. "It's the equivalent of you closing your door or hanging up your phone, but a person is still there in your home following you room to room but you can't see them." Lillie Coney, Electronic Privacy Information Center
It's called "frictionless sharing." Lawmakers call it an invasion of privacy.
Democrat Ed Markey and Republican Joe Barton are pushing a "do not track kids" bill in Congress.
In this letter, they're asking the Federal Trade Commission to investigate.
The discovery comes as users adjust to other new changes. "It's not fair to have consumers in a position to play catch up every time the company decides it wants to change something." Lillie Coney/ Electronic Privacy Information
Facebook users say they're surprised. "That sounds awful. I didn't know they could do that," said one person, "big brother is definitely out there."
Facebook says the tracking is part of its security - to prevent someone else from logging in as you. They say it's not logged or used to target advertising.
Facebook also says they've fixed the problem. If you want to be sure, delete your browsing history or use a separate browser for Facebook.