Meta Empowers Users to Limit Personal Data Use in AI Model Training

NNicholas August 30, 2023 10:02 PM

Meta, formerly known as Facebook, has introduced an opt-out tool allowing users to control the use of their personal data in the training of generative AI models. The tool, included in the Facebook help center resource section, gives users the ability to access, alter, or delete any personal data pulled from third-party sources used to train the company's large language and AI models.

Facebook evolves into Meta

The transformation of Facebook into Meta, announced by Mark Zuckerberg in October 2021, signifies the company's forward leap into the realm of the metaverse. This name change reflects Meta's evolving identity and expanding focus beyond social networking, diving into the uncharted territories of the virtual universe.

In a bid to enhance data privacy, Meta has updated its Facebook help center resource section. It now includes a form titled 'Generative AI Data Subject Rights.' This gives users the power to restrict the use of their third-party information in the training of generative AI models. Such a move showcases Meta's commitment to transparency and respect for user privacy as AI technology continues to advance.

Meta uses a vast array of data, including personal information, to train its generative AI models. This data is typically pulled from publicly available sources on the internet or licensed sources. While this information forms part of the billions of data pieces used in model training, it raises concerns about privacy, especially when personal information is involved.

Collective call for increased data privacy

Recently, data privacy has come under the spotlight, with a consortium of data protection agencies issuing a joint statement to Meta and other tech companies. These agencies, from countries including the U.K., Canada, and Switzerland, have raised concerns about data scraping and expressed the need for enhanced user privacy protection, reminding these companies of their obligations under various data protection and privacy laws.

Controlling personal data use in AI training

Meta has now made it easier for users to control the use of their personal data. By following a series of steps provided on Meta's privacy policy page about generative AI, users can now access a form that allows them to potentially delete or alter personal data obtained from third-party sources, which is used for training generative AI models. This initiative empowers users by giving them greater control over their data.

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