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(This is not a repeat question to "How is Facebook accessing my iPhone texts in order to recommend friends?", on StackExchange Security, linked below. I wish to know the internal details of how downloading the Facebook app on a smartphone allows Facebook to see SMS data, particularly from iMessages. I am asking for the technical details here.)

Assuming the answers to this question are correct: https://security.stackexchange.com/questions/96772/how-is-facebook-accessing-my-iphone-texts-in-order-to-recommend-friends

Is there a SDK or private framework that can access iMessage contents from an iOS app on a non-jailbroken phone?

The previous topic discussed Facebook: Is the Facebook smartphone app able to access SMS data? Somehow, downloading the Facebook app grants Facebook access to SMS data via iMessages (if you use an iPhone). I would like to understand how this works.

What other data is Facebook able to access on smartphones as soon as you download the FB app?

  • You haven't established the premise of your question. Facebook should not be able to access SMS or iMessage history. Other users have probably granted Facebook access to their contacts on device (when prompted they gave permission, or they use a device where permission isn't required). Facebook's algorithm also "knows" about their networks. It is making suggestions based on mutual friends, etc. – samh Aug 14 '15 at 0:35
  • @samh So, by granting Facebook access to contacts on their device, Facebook's algorithms do what exactly? I am asking for details. Do they have a search function for my name? Is there are search algorithm that has finally made the connection between my phone number and my name? Speak to me as if I am a computer scientist or programmer. – ShanZhengYang Aug 14 '15 at 2:39
  • I am down voting because this is asking a question which doesn't seem to be valid (meaning it doesn't seem to have an scientific leg to stand on). If the question is asked "how does X do Y?" when X does not do Y, or there are no external indications that it does, it is impossible to answer. Perhaps "does X do Y?" would be a better approach. – bassplayer7 Aug 14 '15 at 3:00
  • @bassplayer7 Edited. – ShanZhengYang Aug 14 '15 at 3:10
  • Also - could you let us know if this is "Is there a SDK or private framework that can access iMessage contents from an iOS app on a non-jailbroken phone" or "I'm an end user and want to know how I can tell which entitlements a specific app has requested". the former might go better at SO, but could stay here. The latter is just fine to keep here IMO. – bmike Aug 14 '15 at 18:23
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How does the Facebook app access SMS data?

If by SMS data you mean your texts

  • Facebook cannot access your texts or iMessages
  • Facebook cannot send texts or iMessages
  • Facebook cannot see who you are texting or messaging

If by SMS data you mean your cellular E/3G/4G/LTE connection

  • You can disable this by going to Settings -> Cellular and switching Facebook to the Off (left) position.
  • This is standard on all cellular phones

Somehow, downloading the Facebook app grants Facebook access to SMS data via iMessages (if you use an iPhone).

  • See above responses

What other data is Facebook able to access on smartphones as soon as you download the FB app?

  • Facebook cannot access your Contacts, Photos, Calendars, Reminders, Location, Camera, Microphone without requesting access
  • Facebook can see which apps you have installed if the app is making its presence known
  • Facebook can access the time, the device settings, the internet
  • Facebook is suddenly recommending "friends" to me of all the people I have contacted via iMessages within the past two years. People I met once at a bar, and then blocked and deleted them. I do not have the Facebook app. Either Facebook is accessing my phone data (somehow), or Facebook is accessing their phone data. – ShanZhengYang Aug 14 '15 at 2:37
  • It is the suddenness which confuses me. It appears Facebook's algorithms have now made the connection between my phone number and my name (i.e. my profile). I would like to understand how this works. – ShanZhengYang Aug 14 '15 at 2:43
  • That is unrelated to your texts. I have seen Facebook show me recommendations for people I met (but never contacted online), therefor indicating it is not a matter of texting them. – Ezekiel Elin Aug 14 '15 at 16:02
  • The other way I contacted them was through iMessages. The only way they contacted me was through iMessages. There is no other way possible. Certain people I met randomly in a different city, and I shared my number with them. I never saw them again. – ShanZhengYang Aug 14 '15 at 16:25
  • "only way", not "other way" – ShanZhengYang Aug 14 '15 at 18:09

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