Privacy SOS

Quitting Facebook? Good luck with that

Trying to quit Facebook because you are concerned about privacy, or you simply don't want high school classmates looking at pictures of your friends and family anymore? Good luck with that — it might be more difficult than you thought.

A reader writes that when Facebook suspended his account because they thought it was a fake, he just decided to delete the account. But the company had locked him out of the account, so he couldn't get back in it to delete it. When he contacted them to try to delete it, the company asked him for a copy of his driver's license. Why? To confirm his identify. The company needed to know his legal name before he could delete his own profile? What? 

It gets creepier.

Since he really wanted to be done with Facebook, he sent them a copy of his identification only for Facebook to write back and tell him it wasn't good enough. The company needed a color JPG of any government-issued ID, with his name, date of birth and photograph clearly visible. If it weren't so unfortunate, it'd be a funny story, because this person used the same ID to obtain a mortgage. 

See the letter below (click to enlarge).

Note: I made a correction to this post because I initially missed the part of the story where Facebook suspended his account. 

© 2021 ACLU of Massachusetts.