Facebook admitted on Friday (March 23) that its Android apps for Facebook Lite and Facebook Messenger uploaded logs of users' call and text-message histories to Facebook servers. The log updates happen if users grant the apps permission to sync contact-list information with Facebook.
It's possible that the regular Facebook Android app also did this at one point, and we're trying to clarify whether or not that was the case. However, at present, the regular Facebook app does not appear to keep track of calls made and text messages sent.
We've already posted a guide on how to disable call-and-text log syncing for Facebook Lite for Android, which you can do without disabling the syncing of contact lists. (Facebook promises that disabling the syncing for either app erases the logs from Facebook's servers.)
Unfortunately, the two features come as a bundle for Facebook Messenger. You can't disable log syncing without also disabling contact syncing.
If you're cool with losing both features — and you should be, as Facebook is simply going to use your Android phone's contact list to bug more people to join Facebook — then here's how to disable log and contact-list syncing in Facebook Messenger for Android.
Open the Facebook Messenger app.
Tap your avatar in the upper right corner.
Scroll down and tap People.
Tap Sync contacts to toggle syncing on or off.
Click OK when the dialogue box asks you to confirm.
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Paul Wagenseil is a senior editor at Tom's Guide focused on security and privacy. He has also been a dishwasher, fry cook, long-haul driver, code monkey and video editor. He's been rooting around in the information-security space for more than 15 years at FoxNews.com, SecurityNewsDaily, TechNewsDaily and Tom's Guide, has presented talks at the ShmooCon, DerbyCon and BSides Las Vegas hacker conferences, shown up in random TV news spots and even moderated a panel discussion at the CEDIA home-technology conference. You can follow his rants on Twitter at @snd_wagenseil.