The truth about the horrifying theory that Facebook is “listening through your mic” has been revealed

FACEBOOK has been dogged for years by claims that the popular app is eavesdropping on conversations.

Several users say they’ve noticed ads mysteriously appearing shortly after talking about a specific topic or brand.

The wiretapping rumor has been going around for ages


The wiretapping rumor has been going around for agesCredit: AP

For example, in 2021, a paranoid coffee shop owner claimed that “they are listening” after her app started showing ads for oat milk after a conversation about the milk alternative.

Another person reported a “strange” coincidence of their own.

They were apparently talking about VR arcades and that there aren’t any nearby.

But the next day, while scrolling through Facebook, his other half noticed an ad for a VR arcade in Birmingham, where they live.

So is Facebook really listening to my conversations?

Despite these repeated claims, there has never really been any proof that Facebook can spy on you in this way.

The owner of the social network, Meta, has repeatedly denied the allegations.

A spokesperson previously said: “Facebook does not use your phone’s microphone to notify ads or change what you see in News Feed.

“Some recent articles have suggested that we need to listen to people’s conversations in order to show them relevant ads. That is not true.

“We show ads based on people’s interests and other profile information — not what they talk out loud about.

“We only access your microphone if you have given permission to our app and if you are actively using a specific feature that requires audio.

“This may include recording a video or using an optional feature we introduced two years ago to include music or other audio with your status updates.”

How do you explain ads related to my conversations?

It all boils down to the magic of targeted advertising.

It works so well that Facebook doesn’t really have to bug you.

The social network collects an amazing amount of information about you.

You can see some of what you see by visiting this shortcut.

Advertisers can use information from your activities across the web and across multiple devices.

This is possible even if you are not logged into Facebook or other services.

You know roughly where you live, what you like, who your friends are, how much money you make, your political beliefs, and much more.

So if you’re getting ads for something you’ve been talking out loud about, it’s almost certainly only advertisers who are very good at predicting your interests.

It is also possible that an advertising campaign is running and you saw an ad and did not notice it.

You’ve then talked about it without realizing you’ve been promoted, and only then notice future ads – which suddenly seem suspicious.

Brave dog sled boy Alejandro Miszan breaks the silence as he is pictured back home
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