low phone battery

Ex-Employee Says Facebook Can and Does Drain People’s Phone Batteries On Purpose

This story, if verified by more parties, could be the next Cambridge Analytica for Facebook. Remember when Apple intentionally hobbled old iPhones to help battery life? This is basically that but in reverse.

An ex-Facebook employee revealed that Facebook drains user’s phone batteries intentionally, as part of regular tests, without informing the users or caring about the risks of such a move.

In a process called “negative testing”, companies can access users’ phones to test features on an app or see how images load without informing them or asking for consent, something which drains phone batteries.

George Hayward, a data scientist, was employed by Facebook’s parent company Meta and had to participate in the so-called “negative testing”.

When they refused, citing ethical concerns like what could happen if someone were to be left without their phone due to a test like this, Meta allegedly fired them. After being let go in November, Hayward then filed a lawsuit against the company in the Manhattan Federal Court and became a whistleblower about the practice of “negative testing”. However, they were forced to withdraw the suit because they had signed a contract that required them to go to arbitration with Meta before suing.

“Killing someone’s cellphone battery puts people at risk, especially “in circumstances where they need to communicate with others, including but not limited to police or other rescue workers,” said Hayward and their attorney in the litigation.

“I refused to do this test. It turns out if you tell your boss, ‘No, that’s illegal,’ it doesn’t go over very well,” Hayward told The New York Post.

Right now, Meta didn’t provide a statement about Hayward’s accusation. Despite awaiting the arbitration hearing, Hayward says they’re standing by the allegations.

Also read: Tiktok Tracking: How Much Data Tiktok Uses and How To Stop It Tracking You

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Ex-Employee Says Facebook Can and Does Drain People’s Phone Batteries On Purpose

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