Facebook Privacy Pitfalls: How Data Security & Customer Privacy dominated SASB Materiality score in real time

Blog March 22, 2018

Facebook apologized this month for letting user data travel too far, too fast to parties that users didn’t knowingly share their data with.

The company’s market cap dropped by $37 billion as the story unfolded, showing that market players consider the issue material to financial performance.

As the social media giant struggles to win back consumer trust and adjust privacy settings, here’s a look at the company’s past year, when performance has trailed that of peers in Internet & Media Services.  

The tool used for this analysis is Truvalue Labs’ platform, Insight360, which empowers investment professionals to identify material events that will affect financial performance, and then drill down to find the specific events that pull company scores up or down.

The metric seen below in the chart as a solid line is the company’s Insight score, a measure of long-term performance.  In this case it is filtered for factors considered material to financial performance by the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board, SASB.

When using SASB materiality, Facebook trails its peers by about 4 points on Insight360 100-point scale, a significant margin.

Distinct dips in the dotted line show drops in Facebook’s timely ESG score, called the Pulse score.   

Each drop represents a visual entry point for an investment professional to do research.

Data Security & Customer Privacy is just one category used to calculate Facebook’s SASB materiality ESG score, but it is a theme that comes up repeatedly in the company’s track record.

Here’s a look at the events captured on Insight360 in the past year during which Facebook’s SASB Materiality score dropped, specifically in months with dramatic drops.

July 2017

  • Germany’s Federal Cartel Office Claims Facebook ‘Extorts’ Personal Data From Users. /  tech.slashdot.org
  • Facebook can track your browsing even after you’ve logged out, judge says. / The Guardian
  • Facebook Data Collection: Germany Investigates Social Network ‘Extorting’ User Info. / International Business Times

September 2017

  • Facebook fined in Spain for allegedly misusing personal data. / Engadget
  • Facebook Fined Over Privacy Practices: Spanish Regulators Issue $1.4 Million Fine. / International Business Times
  • Facebook fined $1.4 million by Spanish Data Protection Agency. / Siliconbeat
  • Facebook hit with €1.2m fine in Spain for breaking privacy laws.  / The Telegraph Technology

December 2017

  • France’s CNIL: WhatsApp’s Data Sharing With Facebook Is Illegal. / Tom’s Hardware
  • Facebook Battles Users Over Tracking At Health Sites. / MediaPost
  • Facebook Wants Your Face and You’ll Probably Let Them Have It / Gizmodo

February 2018

  • Facebook ordered to stop tracking web users in Belgium. / The Inquirer
  • Why Was Facebook So Easy to Hijack?. / WSJ – Business
  • Facebook’s tracking of non-users ruled illegal again. / TechCrunch

March 2018

  • Facebook must ‘step up’ after data scandal: Zuckerberg. / Channel NewsAsia
  • After Days of Silence, Mark Zuckerberg Publicly Addresses Facebook’s User-Data Uproar. /  The Wall Street Journal
  • Mark Zuckerberg breaks his silence on Cambridge Analytica scandal. / CNN Money
  • Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg breaks silence on data breach scandal. / GeekWire