Twitter is in hot water over its misuse of user’s information. Per the New York Post, the social media company has been using user’s phone numbers to target ads. They are expected to be charged up to $250 million.
The outlet states, “The social network said that last year, it ‘inadvertently’ used numbers supplied for security — to steer advertising. The FTC (Federal Trade Commission) last week sent a notice of its intent to punish the company for violating a 2011 data protection agreement.”
As Twitter users already know, the platform allows them to provide their phone numbers to set up two-factor authentication as an added extra layer of protection against hackers.
In a blog post from 2019, Twitter spoke about this feature within their app. They revealed they allowed advertisers to target ads based on advertisers’ marketing lists. They stated, “When an advertiser uploaded their marketing list, we may have matched people on Twitter to their list based on the email or phone number the Twitter account holder provided for safety and security purposes. This was an error and we apologize.”