How Facebook is still alive, running on a model that hasn't been adapted too much, given the number of privacy issues that have cropped up over the years, is a miracle. This time, a Wall Street Journal investigation has found that Facebook applications have been supplying identifying information of Facebook users to advertising and Internet tracking companies.
The reason this is an issue is that this time, the practice goes against Facebook's own rules and regulations. The issue affects tens of millions of Facebook users, even those with the strictest privacy settings. One of the most popular Facebook applications, Farmville, was found doing this. Developed by Zynga Game Network, the application supplied the unique Facebook 'number' that every user is assigned to outside companies. This number, when used to search for Facebook users in any browser, allows the searcher to access even the most strictly controlled profiles.
Facebook themselves prohibit applications developers from providing user information to outside companies. They've already taken action by blocking certain applications. This is just another reason for Facebook users to not worry about their privacy settings as much as the information they put up on the website, especially since Facebook has made it pretty clear that the information users put up on Facebook belongs to them, not the user.