Facebook wants to become a liaison for banking interactions

"The idea is that messaging with a bank can be better than waiting on hold."

Ian Bush
August 06, 2018 - 7:27 pm
Facebook Messenger

PA Images/Sipa USA

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — Facebook wants to help you "like" your bank. 

Despite sharp criticism over how it handles your private information, the social network and advertising giant wants to become a place for financial transactions as well.

Facebook said "the idea is that messaging with a bank can be better than waiting on hold" on the phone.

"They want you to be able to get updates on your balance, understand how to set a travel alert, and do all that from your Messenger app," said Bloomberg technology reporter Sarah Frier.

Facebook wants this chat app to make money like its newsfeed does, but Frier said Facebook pledges not to use banking data for advertising.

"People don't necessarily trust that even though Facebook says they won't do it, that that's actually the case," she added.

A Wall Street Journal report said the social media company has asked banks for customer details like credit and debit card transactions and checking account balances. In a statement, Facebook said it's "not true" that it is "actively" seeking financial transaction data, and that account services would be "completely opt-in."

Facebook has come under fire for how it secures the personal information of its billions of members, and has been running ads pledging a return to its roots as a place that connects families and friends.