Facebook Offers Banks Its Users for Their Data

The company says it's 'partnering' with financial giants like Wells Fargo and Citigroup
By Josh Gardner,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 6, 2018 5:00 PM CDT
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The logo for Facebook appears on screens at the Nasdaq MarketSite in New York's Times Square.   (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)

(Newser) – A report out Monday in the Wall Street Journal claims Facebook has asked some of America's largest financial institutions to share their customers' private financial data. The social giant reportedly wants data as specific as checking account balances and individual transaction information, which would be used as part of a bid to expand their own services by offering banks ways to access users (and give users access to banking) via Facebook Messenger. Facebook has pitched the idea to JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citigroup, and US Bancorp, per the report.

While reactions on social media to the WSJ were often critical of the report, especially from people already concerned about Facebook's handling of its own private user data, the company was quick to issue a rebuttal. "A recent WSJ story implies incorrectly that we are actively asking financial services companies for financial transaction data—this is not true,” Facebook said in statement. The statement, obtained by Ars Technica, went on to portray it as common practice for all companies with commerce business to "partner with banks and credit card companies to offer services like customer chat or account management."

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