A class action lawsuit has been filed against Facebook over changes that the social networking site made to its privacy settings last November and December.
The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, alleges that the modifications have in reality reduced privacy protections for Facebook users rather than increasing it, as the company had claimed it would.
"Changes to the privacy settings that Facebook implemented and represented to increase User privacy had the outright opposite effect of resulting in the public dissemination of personal information that was originally private," the lawsuit claimed.
Facebook's messaging around the changes were "misleading, confusing and disingenuous," said the lawsuit, which seeks unspecified monetary damages from the company.
A Facebook spokesman insisted that the company had taken all the right measures to inform users about the changes, citing the recent modifications.
"We are confident that the transition process begun more than a month ago was transparent, consistent with people's expectations, and well within the law," said Facebook director of policy communications Barry Schnitt in an e-mail.
"Specifically, the announcement and education campaign by Facebook around the changes was unprecedented in its scope. Any recommended changes to a person's privacy settings were clearly shown to them repeatedly and were not implemented until they accepted these changes," Schnitt said.