Feeds

Facebook founder loses court battle to keep personal data offline

Poked by his own petard... bitch

SANS - Survey on application security programs

Mark Zuckerberg has been given a taste of his own medicine: his personal information is being plastered all over the web forever.

The Facebook boss has failed in a court bid to gag a magazine that published data including drunken extracts from his college diary and his social security number.

Federal judge Douglas Woodlock told the 23-year-old's lawyers on Friday that the independent Harvard alumni magazine 02138 had the right to release the documents, which were part of another court case.

02138's investigation centred on the dispute between Zuckerberg and the operators of ConnectU, another Harvard-founded social network. It's alleged that in the early days of Facebook, "the new Bill Gates" nicked ideas and source code from brothers Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss, who had asked him to work on their project.

Digging into that period, freelance reporter Luke O'Brien turned up a series of depositions and other documents on a visit to the courthouse, and the magazine ran them in support of his article. The piece is sympathetic to the Winklevoss twins and reports accusations by classmates that Zuckerberg had lied in front of them.

Facebook lawyers applied to have the documents taken down on Thursday, saying the court had ordered them to be sealed.

A spokeswoman told the Wall Street Journal: "One reason the court ordered certain documents' protection was to prevent exactly what has happened: misusing documents and taking documents out of context to sling mud."

Their failed application also attempted to force O'Brien to reveal how he obtained the files, since they had been locked up. He has maintained he was given them by a Federal Appeals Court clerk.

The judge denied all Facebook's claims. According to the New York Times, the clerk mistakenly handed over the files to O'Brien.

Zuckerberg and Co. will be hoping Friday's decision marks the end of a run of public embarrassments for Facebook. On Thursday, it was finally forced to bow to pressure over its creepy new ad system Beacon.

There could be more privacy-related defeats ahead, however. The UK's Information Commissioner is investigating Facebook's "Hotel California" policy on user data that means accounts can only be deactivated, never deleted.

02138's article and the Facebook files are here. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Putin tells Snowden: Russia conducts no US-style mass surveillance
Gov't is too broke for that, Russian prez says
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Lavabit loses contempt of court appeal over protecting Snowden, customers
Judges rule complaints about government power are too little, too late
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Don't let no-hire pact suit witnesses call Steve Jobs a bullyboy, plead Apple and Google
'Irrelevant' character evidence should be excluded – lawyers
Edward Snowden on his Putin TV appearance: 'Why all the criticism?'
Denies Q&A cameo was meant to slam US, big-up Russia
EFF: Feds plan to put 52 MILLION FACES into recognition database
System would identify faces as part of biometrics collection
Record labels sue Pandora over vintage song royalties
Companies want payout on recordings made before 1972
Ex-Tony Blair adviser is new top boss at UK spy-hive GCHQ
Robert Hannigan to replace Sir Iain Lobban in the autumn
Judge halts spread of zombie Nortel patents to Texas in Google trial
Epic Rockstar patent war to be waged in California
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.