From last years, Facebook is collecting data about your call history and SMS from Android devices. It was realized when a number of users back up their Facebook data. The users who came to know about this are more concerned about their data following the Cambridge Analytica controversy.
Mat Johnson said on his Twitter account that Facebook has every user mobile phone call and text message stored in its data file for about a year. Another user Lethogonolo Moseki tweeted by saying all the contacts which are present on her phone, messages and call duration were present in the data file.
According to Ars Technica Facebook always request to access your contacts, SMS data and call history through the Android devices, so that friend recommendation algorithm will improve. Facebook also collect the data via its Messenger Application by requesting the user to set up the app as the default SMS service. It also encourages users to upload the information about the phone numbers, call history, and text history continuously. “This lets friends find each other on Facebook and helps us create a better experience for everyone” as said by Facebook in a pop-up message.
If you want to download your Facebook data then go to Settings>General>Download a copy of your Facebook Data (desktop version of Facebook). After you download unzip that file and you can find out all the contacts, call and SMS data that has stored on your mobile device under the contact_info.htm file.
The user usually gives access to data when they install Facebook app on their Android device before the version 4.1 or Jelly Bean. Google changed this permission structure in API level 16 of Android 4.1 APIs. This structure is not useful as Facebook API can access your call and SMS data through an earlier Android SDK version. Facebook in a statement said that “We never sell this data, and this feature does not collect the content of your text messages or calls”.
If you want to prevent Facebook from syncing your contacts, then tap on your profile picture from Home in the top right corner>People>Synced Contacts. For Facebook Lite users, tap on Three-line icon>App Settings>Continuous Contacts Upload and then turn off the Sync Your Call and Text History.