Cook reportedly told Zuck to delete all third-party user data. He didn’t.

What you need to know

  • Tim Cook and Mark Zuckerberg were involved in a meeting in July 2019.
  • The Apple CEO wanted Facebook to delete all third-party data, but it didn’t.

Did he expect it to actually happen?

Apple CEO Tim Cook reportedly told Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg that his company should delete data collected via third parties during a meeting of the pair in July 2019. Zuck, according to a New York Times report, wasn’t impressed.

Somewhat predictably, Facebook didn’t delete any of the data.

From the NYT:

At the meeting, Mr. Zuckerberg asked Mr. Cook how he would handle the fallout from the controversy, people with knowledge of the conversation said. Mr. Cook responded acidly that Facebook should delete any information that it had collected about people outside of its core apps.

And the outcome:

Mr. Zuckerberg was stunned, said the people, who were not authorized to speak publicly. Facebook depends on data about its users to target them with online ads and to make money. By urging Facebook to stop gathering that information, Mr. Cook was in effect telling Mr. Zuckerberg that his business was untenable. He ignored Mr. Cook’s advice.

This news comes as Apple is Apple is about to release iOS 14.5 along with its new App Tracking Transparency (ATT) feature. That feature will require apps to ask a user’s permission before tracking them from app to app – something advertisers do a lot and are worried that users won’t agree to. Both Apple and Facebook have been in a semi-public spat about ATT ever since it was announced last year.

It’s doubtful Cook ever expected Zuckerberg to delete any data. But the fact he made the suggestion during a meeting is the best news of this Monday so far! If you’re worried about what data Facebook is collecting, maybe it’s time to switch to one of the many Facebook alternatives.

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