Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg says that recent revelations of the US National Security Agency’s surveillance programs have have led to a meaningful decline in trust of Facebook and other big internet companies.
At an event hosted by The Atlantic in Washington, DC, Zuckerberg said that “trust metrics” for all the big internet firms “went down with PRISM.” It’s the first time that one of the companies implicated in the NSA’s dragnet has acknowledged a significant backlash from customers. Zuckerberg didn’t say whether Facebook had lost users as a result.
Facebook and other internet companies are suing the United States to be able to disclose more information about how much data the NSA collects from them. Exactly how they participate in PRISM and other surveillance programs remains unclear.
Later in the interview with Atlantic editor-in-chief James Bennet, Zuckerberg seemed genuinely frustrated by the US government’s handling of the NSA revelations. “Some of the government’s statements have been particularly unhelpful,” he said. “Like, oh, we only spy on non-Americans.” Zuckerberg pointed out that Facebook is “an international platform,” and most of its users aren’t American.