Apple CEO Tim Cook Says Facebook Needs Regulation, Elon Musk Says Facebook Scares Him

Facebook can’t catch a break at the moment.

After WhatsApp co-founder and Elon Musk had publicly come out against the embattled social network, Apple CEO Tim Cook has also thrown his hat into the ring. When asked at a conference about what he felt about the privacy concerns surrounding Facebook, he said things had gotten so out of hand that he believed some sort of regulation was required.

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“I think that this certain situation is so dire and has become so large that probably some well-crafted regulation is necessary,” Cook said on the Facebook issue. “The ability of anyone to know what you’ve been browsing about for years, who your contacts are, who their contacts are, things you like and dislike and every intimate detail of your life — from my own point of view it shouldn’t exist.”

Cook also said that the tech industry had known this day was coming, but turned a blind eye to the dangers of people sharing intimate details about themselves online. “We’ve worried for a number of years that people in many countries were giving up data probably without knowing fully what they were doing and that these detailed profiles that were being built of them, that one day something would occur and people would be incredibly offended by what had been done without them being aware of it,” he said. “Unfortunately that prediction has come true more than once.”

Elon Musk, meanwhile, has clarified that his deletion of the SpaceX and Tesla’s Facebook pages wasn’t a political statement. “It’s not a political statement and I didn’t do this because someone dared me to do it,” Musk said. Yesterday, Musk had replied to WhatsApp cofounder Brian Acton message tweet asking people to delete Facebook over its privacy concerns, and had soon deleted SpaceX’s and Tesla’s Facebook pages. Both pages had over 2.6 million followers each.

But Musk today also said that he didn’t personally like Facebook, and that the service scares him. “Just don’t like Facebook. Gives me the willies. Sorry,” he said.

The entire #deleteFacebook campaign had shot into prominence after WhatsApp co-founder Brian Acton had tweeted that it was time to delete Facebook a few days ago. Acton, who’d been a Facebook employee until September last year after WhatsApp was acquired by the company in 2014, had responded to concerns that Facebook had allowed the personal data of 50 million Americans to be stolen and handed over to political campaign management firm Cambridge Analytica, which had in turn used it to influence the US election. 

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