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Barton, Markey Seek Data-Retention Info From Facebook

The co-chairs of the House privacy caucus are concerned about Facebook's online data collection.

Reps. Joe Barton (R-Texas) and Ed Markey (D-Mass.), joined by other members of the caucus, have sent a letter to the social network, prompted by a Wall Street Journal story that a user's request for all the data Facebook had collected about him was answered with a 1,200-page file that included chat conversations and IP addresses.

In the letter, to Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, they seek answers to a series of questions about Facebook's data-retention practices, including all the personally identifiable info it collects, how it collects it, how it stores it and whether it deletes it upon request.

The legislators were concerned that the 1,200 page log included information about people he had "defriended" and other actions he had taken to delete information that Facebook apparently still retained.

"We are concerned about Facebook's consumer data collection and storage practices," they wrote, and gave Zuckerberg until Nov. 21 to respond.

Also signing on to the letter were Reps. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) and Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.).

"We care deeply about respecting the expectations of the people who trust Facebook with their information and believe that our sound data policies and secure practices are part of the reason people enjoy using our service," said Facebook in a statement. "We look forward to discussing this in more detail with members of the Bipartisan Privacy Caucus and answering any questions they may have."