Microsoft said it took steps to make sure it was respecting user privacy when using Facebook data. Amazon said it uses information in accordance with its privacy policy.

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Microsoft and Amazon were called out in a New York Times investigation of Facebook this week, as customers of the social media site that received data about users that Facebook didn’t receive permission to distribute.

Microsoft received information about Facebook users’ friends, the report said, and Amazon got contact info about people, also through access to their friends.

Microsoft acknowledged the Facebook report Wednesday morning, but said it did not use data from Facebook to create profiles for advertising on its Bing search engine.

A spokeswoman said Microsoft “took significant engineering steps beyond what Facebook required” to make sure the data wasn’t used in profiles for advertising.

“Throughout our engagement with Facebook, we respected all user preferences,” she said.

Microsoft said it stopped using the Facebook data in search results as of February 2016, when its contract with Facebook ended.

An Amazon spokesman confirmed Wednesday that the company works with Facebook.

“Amazon uses APIs (application program interfaces) provided by Facebook in order to enable Facebook experiences for our products,” he said. “For example, giving customers the option to sync Facebook contacts on an Amazon Tablet. We use information only in accordance with our privacy policy.”

The company declined to comment further or provide more details.


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