Facebook wants to share your phone number and address with third party applications

Facebook app to share private info

Palo Alto based Facebook announced on Friday in their developer blog that they are now making a user’s address and mobile phone number accessible as part of the User Graph object. In plain language, this means your phone number and address may be shared with third party apps if you so choose. Jeff Bowen wrote in the blog

Because this is sensitive information, we have created the new user_address and user_mobile_phone permissions. These permissions must be explicitly granted to your application by the user via our standard permissions dialogs.

Facebook app to share private info
Facebook's request to share your phone and address with apps

Many who use Facebook apps are familiar with the request for permission screen. A new entry has been added to allow the app to “access my private contact information”. Note that many web apps have no need for your address and phone number and will probably not ask for it. It is more likely to be used by merchant apps such as ebay marketplace where there would be a valid reason for passing on this information. Your address and phone number will not be shared with existing apps so you will not have to modify those.

In any case, users should pay attention to what private information they are sharing on Facebook as this new feature has the potential to be a telemarketer’s dream.