Facebook, Unfriend The Dictators!

Facebook should be congratulated and condemned in one go: they've built a revolutionary platform that's catalyzed the political change sweeping the Middle East and beyond, but Facebook has also become a treasure trove of information for dictators, allowing them to identify and track down those who oppose them. In fact, under the existing Facebook platform all our photos, details, and contacts are at risk from identity thieves and hackers. While Facebook is reevaluating its policies, please sign the petition to protect our privacy and others' very security.

Dear Mark and the Facebook Board: "We acknowledge the extraordinary role that Facebook is playing in facilitating communications across the globe, and we call upon you to take immediate steps to protect your users' privacy and security. Specifically, you should secure your entire platform with HTTPS, allow users anonymity in high risk areas, protect human rights defenders with special security measures, and resist the handover of users' information."

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Here are the changes Facebook needs to make:

* Anonymize. Repressive regimes of the world love Facebook because if an activist wants to use Facebook they have a choice: reveal their identity or be deleted by Facebook

* Secure. Facebook should install HTTPS (as opposed to HTTP) – a simple, cheap, and highly effective security solution – as a default feature across the entire platform

* Protect. To protect their content, secure their accounts, and appeal wrong decisions, a “concierge service” needs to be set up that can respond quickly to the genuine risk these users face.

* Resist. Facebook should resist overboard requests from governments on either side of the firewall to reveal user information, disclose no more information about their users than is legally required, and inform the user so they can legally respond.