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July 18, 2013

Former Facebook Employee Warns Against Sharing Personal Info

Katherine Losse Says It's Possible the Social Network is Recording Data for NSA

Facebook employees at one time had access to a “master password” that granted them access to every one of the accounts on the social network, according to a former employee.

And while “more secure forms of logging in to repair accounts” were later put into operation, Katherine Losse, who joined Facebook in 2005 as its 51st employee, told The Guardian Wednesday that members of the site should avoid sharing personal information, especially now that the scope of surveillance by the U.S. government has come to light.

Losse, the former speechwriter for CEO Mark Zuckerberg, first made the allegation in The Boy Kings, a book she penned after leaving the company in 2010, but she reiterated her allegations in the interview with The Guardian.

She also told the U.K. publication that Facebook users have reason to be concerned that if the social media site’s staff can access their information, than federal law enforcement agencies can as well.

“Even if an average staff person can’t access it, the information may still be recorded somewhere for the NSA,” she said of how Facebook user information could be treated.

Facebook is one of the companies that allegedly is part of PRISM, the National Security Agency’s top-secret program through which it acquires user data from technology companies.

“Users of social networks generally assume that they are the only ones that can access the information they input, and in most cases at most companies that is most likely not true, because at least some of the staff need to have access to user accounts in order to do their jobs,” Losse was quoted by The Guardian.

Losse is known to have a beef with Facebook and was very critical of the social network in The Boy Kings.