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Facebook (Nasdaq: FB) stock has climbed 161% in just one year. That's a great reversal from its 53% tumble the first three months of trading.
Facebook stock's rebound is one reason investors were praising Facebook Founder and Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg at the recent FB shareholder meeting. Zuckerberg has shown investors he's able to make some savvy purchases, too, with FB's recent buying spree.
But Facebook is now facing something that Zuckerberg may not be able to maneuver around so easily…
A judge in southern Iran has summoned the social media magnate to appear in court to answer individuals' complaints that allege Facebook-owned apps Instagram and WhatsApp violate their privacy.
Chances of Zuckerberg actually appearing in an Iranian court are slim to none, as no extradition treaty between Iran and the United States exists. Still, the Middle East country is sending a clear message with the court order that Facebook and its offshoots are not welcome there.
Just last week, another Iranian court ordered Instagram blocked over privacy concerns.
While Facebook is already officially banned in Iran, scores of its tech-savvy citizens have found ways to bypass controls and access the forbidden social media site.
The Iranian court order came on the heels of some disturbing news reported last week by the International Business Times.
Facebook will use an upcoming mobile app to amass, analyze, and store data (songs and TV shows) captured by smartphones' microphones.
While Facebook assured users that "no sound is stored" by the new feature, the world's largest social media site acknowledged to IBTimes that "data is saved, but all data is anonymized and aggregated."
It's not clear what FB plans to do with the all the sound bites. That in itself is bothersome.
"I think the most problematic element of this is that we don't know with what data the sounds are matched," said Dr. Ilka Gleibs, Professor of Social and Organizational Psychology at the London School of Economics. "As consumers, we have no control over whether data could be de-anonymized or what happens if third parties would like access to the data. It's difficult to trust when messages are so mixed and we deal with so many unknowns."
That's why Iran isn't the only government concerned about FB and privacy…