In October 2012, Zuckerberg sent Sam Lessin, the then Director of Product Management of the company, an e-mail in which he "blocked some parts of the platform, including the details of friends and possibly the e-mail addresses of Friends – on board went mobile apps. "He also expressed skepticism about the risk of data leakage. "I think we're passing information to developers, but I just can not think of any cases where that data got through from developer to developer and caused a real problem for us."
The commentary was part of a conversation with Lessin about Lessin's how the platform's revenue can be earned, how Facebook's data can be used to increase that revenue and how it can be ensured that such a strategy does not undercut the company's growth. Of course, the data collected through the personality quiz "thisisyourdigitallife" was passed on to Cambridge Analytica, and while this data did not affect Facebook's (or at least not directly) sales or competitive advantage, it was certainly a "real problem" for Facebook and millions of its users. And the comment ̵
In a statement, Facebook said that these documents were "presented in a way that is very misleading without any additional context," and Zuckerberg himself has now weighed in. He reiterated that in 2014 the company made some changes that could restrict the data apps from the platform. "This change meant that many sketchy apps – such as the quiz app that sold data to Cambridge Analytica – could no longer be used on our platform," Zuckerberg wrote in a Facebook post. "For years, we've focused on preventing abusive apps, which was the main purpose of this major platform change from 2014. This was indeed a change that was needed to prevent the situation at Cambridge Analytica If we had done it a year earlier, we could have completely prevented this situation. "
If only Facebook.