Q&A: Facebook on data, privacy, and global health

A Facebook profile’s homepage. Photo by: Joshua Hoehne / Unsplash / CC0

GENEVA — Facebook announced new Disease Prevention Maps last week, intended to help researchers and health organizations reach the right people and predict disease outbreaks.

By training its computers to analyze publicly and commercially available satellite images and demographic data — not Facebook user data — the social media company says it has created high-resolution population density maps that are now three times more detailed than any other source.

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About the author

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    Vince Chadwick

    Vince Chadwick is the Brussels Correspondent for Devex. He covers the EU institutions, member states, and European civil society. A law graduate from Melbourne, Australia, he was social affairs reporter for The Age newspaper, before moving to Europe in 2013. He covered breaking news, the arts and public policy across the continent, including as a reporter and editor at POLITICO Europe.