Facebook cuts off NYU researcher access, prompting rebuke from lawmakers



Facebook suspended the accounts of Damon McCoy, an associate professor of computer science and engineering at NYU Tandon, as well as a member of NYU Tandon’s Center for Cybersecurity; and Laura Edelson, a Ph.D. candidate under McCoy's direction.

Lawmakers, like Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Sen. Mark Warner (D-VA), voiced their disapproval of Facebook's actions taken against the research team, who also lead NYU’s Cybersecurity for Democracy project. Wyden argued that Facebook has been “Abusing users’ privacy [for years].” Warner expresses his support of the researchers, noting how independent researchers are “consistently [improving] the integrity and safety of social media platforms by exposing harmful and exploitative activity,” and that “it’s past time for Congress to act to bring greater transparency to the shadowy world of online advertising, which continues to be a major vector for fraud and misconduct.”