TOSBack is a new site created by the Electronic Frontier Foundation that tracks terms of service (TOS) agreements on major websites such as Google, Facebook, YouTube, eBay, Apple, and WordPress. In the past, some major social media sites have instituted TOS agreements that alarmed users and raised questions about their right to privacy. All of the sites in question frequently collect sensitive user data that most users expect to be protected from advertising, unwanted disclosure and fraud.
With this new website, the EFF gives users the ability to see changes in policies via a real-time feed, including side-by-side comparisons of the agreements with the changes highlighted.
‘Terms of Service’ policies on websites define how Internet businesses interact with you and use your personal information,” the EFF said in a statement. “But most web users don’t read these policies–or understand that the terms are constantly changing.”
Usually, a website will send mass emails to their users whenever a policy change takes effect, but most users do not bother to read the often complicated and lengthy documents. Earlier this year, Facebook made a change to its policy that allowed it to use deleted user content whenever and for as long as it wanted. When users protested, the company backed down from the change. The EFF hopes to put other major Internet services under the same scrutiny to ensure user rights are protected.