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Facebook asking U.S. banks for customers' financial info

06 August 2018

Elisabeth Diana, a Facebook spokeswoman, told Ars that while the WSJ reported that Facebook has "asked" banks "to share detailed financial information about their customers, including card transactions and checking-account balances", this isn't quite right.

People familiar with the matter told the Journal that Facebook has considered a feature that would show its users their account balances while it also pitched fraud alerts.

Facebook is now discussing partnership ideas with firms like Citigroup Inc., Wells Fargo, and JPMorgan Chase, but the Cambridge Analytica incident has reportedly caused at least "one large US bank" to pull out of the talks.

At a time when Facebook's data management is under intense scrutiny, this news is unlikely to be greeted enthusiastically by customers of those banks called out in the story - JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citigroup, and U.S. Bancorp.

Facebook has reportedly said that it wouldn't use the data to improve its ad-targeting or share it with others.

One large bank has reportedly pulled away from the discussion due to privacy concerns. The social media giant is facing lawsuits over the debacle in the United States and the United Kingdom, is being investigated by various agencies and has inspired a handful of data privacy bills in both the House and the Senate. (FB) is seeking to acquire financial data on its users. In an effort to better protect user data, the company earlier in March said it ended "Partner Categories", which let advertisers use information from third-party data providers such as Experian and Oracle Data Cloud.

Despite this, Facebook claimed in a statement that the data would not be used for advertisement targeting. A critical part of these partnerships is keeping people's information safe and secure.

Wells Fargo declined to comment.