Facebook collects your sensitive medical data from hospital sites

While Facebook faces other cases, from massive data theft by hackers to fines for spying on its users, a joint study by The Markup and Reveal found that many hospital websites post sensitive medical information to Facebook when people make a reservation. reveals that the sender has a tracking tool. meeting. more precisely, Facebook will currently collect data on people visiting the websites of hundreds of pregnancy crisis centers.

MarkUp tested the websites of America’s top 100 hospitals and found that 33 of them used a tracker called Meta Pixel. It sends a data packet to Facebook every time someone clicks or presses a button to make an appointment. at the doctor. However, Meta prohibits websites and applications that use Facebook’s advertising technology from sending data about the “social network”. sexual and reproductive health “.

Also read – Meta: Don’t know what happened to your personal data? It’s not on Facebook either.

Facebook knows if its users are planning to have an abortion

The survey also focused on 2,500 crisis center websites for pregnant women and found that at least 294 of those sites shared information about their visitors with Facebook. Some sensitive personal data included information about whether a person was considering an abortion or trying to take an emergency contraceptive pill or a pregnancy test.

Experts say hospitals using the tool may violate medical data privacy law, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, or HIPAA. This law does not theoretically prohibit Facebook from sharing data. However, according to one complaint, Facebook tells users that publishers only send data to Facebook if they have legal rights.. In other words, Facebook allegedly misrepresented its policy by collecting information from outside websites that it should not disclose.

Neither hospitals nor Meta said they had such contracts., and The Markup found no evidence that hospitals or Meta otherwise obtained explicit consent from patients. ” Facebook knowingly receives patient data, including patient portal usage information, from hundreds of medical providers in the United States who use Meta Pixel on their websites. ‘ says the case.

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