Facebook’s Privacy Concerns Over Aadhaar- Social Media Linkage Fallacious, Tamil Nadu Tells SC

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Addressing the Supreme Court on Thursday, the Tamil Nadu government reportedly said that Facebook’s concerns on user privacy go against its own “primary business model” of commercialising user data through targetted ads.

The state government was replying to the petition filed by social media giant Facebook seeking transfer of cases to the apex court. The original petitions filed in Chennai in July last year demanded linking of social media handles with the Aadhaar database.

The Madras HC had expanded the petition to include issues like ensuring message traceability to ‘curbing cybercrimes and intermediary liability’.

The Tamil Nadu government, in a detailed 24-page reply drawn by Additional Advocate General Balaji Srinivasan and settled by State Advocate General Vijay Narayan, said Facebook’s concern about privacy was a “red herring”.

It said an argument about privacy “does not lie in the mouth of the petitioner [Facebook], whose primary business model is the use and commercialisation of users’ data, which is in turn shared with businesses and political parties for targeted advertising”.

“In this regard, the petitioner [Facebook] has been in the news globally for its role in the ‘Cambridge Analytica’ scandal,” the State said in its reply filed by advocate T. R. B. Sivakumar.

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