Oculus Quest 2

Warning: *privacy not included with this product

Oculus Quest 2

Facebook
Wi-Fi

Review date: Nov. 8, 2021

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Mozilla says

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People voted: Super creepy

Facebook's Oculus Quest 2 VR headset lets you play games inside the game or, as Mark Zuckerberg hopes you'll call it, the Metaverse. Immerse yourself in virtual reality as you climb tall mountains, battle bad guys, or have a lightsaber fight with Lord Vader. Just be careful to not get too carried away and break your walls or your neck. Be warned, Facebook still requires you to have a Facebook account to use the Oculus Quest 2. And they can and probably will use that account to generate lots more data about you. That's just what Facebook does.

What could happen if something goes wrong?

Facebook—the maker of the Oculus Quest 2—has a long history of betraying users' privacy and trust. They've faced record fines around the world for this and have been caught hiding data leaks from their users. Just as recently as April 2021, it was reported the personal information of more than 500 million Facebook users was shared online in a massive data leak. Couple that with recent Facebook whistleblower testimony to the US Congress that outlined the harms Facebook causes and the dishonest way they approach dealing with these harms and Facebook appears to be one of most immoral companies we review in *Privacy Not Included.

This is the starting point for bringing a device with both cameras and microphones that will be mapping and collecting a lot of data about you and your home environment. To use the device, you're still required to have a Facebook account (unless you shell out an additional $500 for a business version), which is another flag for us as Facebook collects and shares a large amount of user data and doesn’t always secure that data properly. The question comes down to, does Facebook have your best interests at heart when it collects all the data this device is capable of collecting? From Cambridge Analytica to where we are today, the answer to that question is a resounding NO. We're afraid this device comes with *privacy not included.

Tips to protect yourself

  • Connect your Oculus to the secure WiFi network
  • Set up an unlock pattern and secure your Quest 2 or Quest with an extra layer of security that you can use to prevent others from accessing your device or saved passwords.
  • Minimize the amount of data shared with your Facebook account
  • Set up your Facebook account's privacy settings
mobile Privacy warning Security A.I.

Can it snoop on me? information

Camera

Device: Yes

App: No

Microphone

Device: Yes

App: No

Tracks location

Device: Yes

App: Yes

What can be used to sign up?

Facebook account is required

What data does the company collect?

How does the company use this data?

Facebook's Oculus receives information about you from third parties, including third-party apps, developers, other online content providers, and marketing partners that provide information.

Oculus shares information with related companies, including the Facebook Companies. Facebook shares data with numerous third parties such as partners who use their analytics services, advertisers, measurement partners, partners offering goods and services in Facebook products, vendors and service providers, researchers and academics, law enforcement, and legal requests.

How can you control your data?

Facebook's Oculus stores Oculus data that identifies you until it is no longer necessary to provide Oculus Products or your Oculus account is deleted, whichever comes first, unless retention of the data for a longer period is justified in order to comply with law or recordkeeping obligations, to respond to a legal request, prevent harm, or to improve Oculus safety, integrity and security features.

When you delete your account, Oculus deletes things you have posted and information about apps and entitlements you have downloaded, and you will not be able to recover that information later. Information that others have shared about you is not part of your account and will not be deleted when you delete your account. To delete your account at any time, or to learn more about deleting your account, please visit the Privacy Center.

What is the company’s known track record of protecting users’ data?

Bad

In April 2021, it was reported that there was a personal data leak of about 533 million Facebook users from 106 countries, including over 32 million records on users in the US, 11 million on users in the UK, and 6 million on users in India. It includes their phone numbers, Facebook IDs, full names, locations, birth dates, bios, and, in some cases, email addresses.

In August 2019, Bloomberg reported that Facebook hired contractors to transcribe audio messages users sent through Messenger and Facebook confirmed the report.

Can this product be used offline?

Yes

If using an app that works offline.

User-friendly privacy information?

Yes

Detailed Privacy FAQ & settings are provided

Links to privacy information

Does this product meet our Minimum Security Standards? information

Yes

Encryption

Yes

Strong password

Yes

Security updates

Yes

Manages vulnerabilities

Yes

Privacy policy

Yes

Does the product use AI? information

Yes

Is this AI untrustworthy?

Can’t Determine

What kind of decisions does the AI make about you or for you?

Oculus Insight computes an accurate and real-time position for the headset and controllers every millisecond in order to translate your precise movements into VR

Is the company transparent about how the AI works?

Yes

Does the user have control over the AI features?

Yes


News

Will the Oculus Quest still require a Facebook account? It’s complicated
The Verge
Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg hinted the restriction might be ending. But his comments raised more questions than they answered, and we still don’t know exactly what they mean.
Facebook’s Oculus Quest will soon be called the Meta Quest
The Verge
Meta, formerly known as Facebook, is rebranding its hardware to match its new name. Meta CTO Andrew Bosworth announced that the company is phasing out its Oculus branding, including on the Oculus Quest virtual reality headset.
Facebook Just Gave 1 Million Oculus Users A Reason To Quit
Forbes
Facebook has confirmed it is trialling ads in its Oculus headset, breaking previous promises from the VR headset's founder. Is this a reason to ditch your device?
Facebook hit with antitrust probe for tying Oculus use to Facebook accounts
TechCrunch
Facebook’s bad week just got worse: It’s being investigated in Germany for linking usage of its VR product, Oculus, to having a Facebook account.
Facebook’s virtual reality push is about data, not gaming
The Conversation
VR and its cousin, augmented reality (AR), are perhaps the most data-extractive digital sensors we’re likely to invite into our homes in the next decade.
Oculus will sell you a Quest 2 headset that doesn't need Facebook for an extra $500
PC Gamer
The Oculus Quest 2 is a hell of a lot of hardware for $299. In fact, we're convinced that Facebook is making a loss on each unit sold.
Facebook VP of VR recommends checking your account is in 'good standing' before buying a Quest 2
Fraser Brown
If you've bought an Oculus headset this month, or are planning to in the future, you can no longer avoid Facebook. Signing up to the social network frequented by your worst relatives is now mandatory if you want to slap one of its headsets onto your face, though existing users can avoid its clammy touch until 2023. For those that do sign up or merge their accounts, it means that if you somehow lose access to that account, you also lose access to your games.
Should You Trust Facebook With Oculus Quest 2 Privacy?
Johnathan Jaehnig
A lot of people are excited about the upcoming Quest 2 VR headset. However, a lot of people are pretty angry about it. It looks like a good headset from a (once) respectable manufacturer. So, why the hard feelings? They have to do with the fact that the headset is being released by Facebook. The company has a chequered past when it comes to user information and their recent forays into extended reality may be a reason for concern.
Everything We Know About Facebook's Massive Security Breach
Louise Matsakis and Issie Lapowsky
Facebook’s privacy problems severely escalated Friday when the social network disclosed that an unprecedented security issue, discovered September 25, impacted almost 50 million user accounts. Unlike the Cambridge Analytica scandal, in which a third-party company erroneously accessed data that a then-legitimate quiz app had siphoned up, this vulnerability allowed attackers to directly take over user accounts.

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