Facebook now lets you disconnect third-party apps in bulk

Facebook connected apps

In the wake of the Cambridge Analytica data scandal, in which information from more than 50 million Facebook users was harvested without permission, it's a good time to check which organizations have access to your details and remove any you aren't happy with. 

Until now it was necessary to select each one individually and view its details before disconnecting it. If you've used Facebook for a long time, you might have authorized dozens of apps over the years, making that a long and arduous process.

Thankfully, Facebook has recognized this problem and developed an easier option. To give it a try, visit your App Settings page and click all the apps that you'd like to disconnect from your account. Then just click 'Remove'.

Why prune your apps?

Third-party Facebook apps aren't always what they seem. Cambridge Analytica acquired data from millions of users via a personality test called 'thisisyourdigitallife' developed by researcher Aleksandr Kogan.

This app gathered information from each user's friends, but in violation of Facebook's Platform Policy, Kodan then sold it to research company Cambridge Analytica. CA then used it to predict voting patterns for the 2016 US presidential election, and target voters with highly specific advertising.

Facebook is currently busy trawling through apps that had access to similar data before 2014 (which it put an end to the practice of sharing friends' data) and has promised to ban any developers that don't comply with its investigations.

Disconnecting apps won't delete any data that their developers have already collected, but it's a sensible move if you don't use the app regularly to avoid giving away your details unnecessarily. Apps can also change hands, so your information might now be handled by an organization you don't know.