Facebook is 'the most appalling spying machine that has ever been created', WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has told a Russian newspaper.
He accuses the company - and others - of actively cooperating with US intelligence forces to allow them to spy on citizens.
"Here we have the world's most comprehensive database about people, their relationships, their names, their addresses, their locations, their communications with each other, their relatives, all sitting within the United States, all accessible to US intelligence," he says in an interview with Russia Today.
"Facebook, Google, Yahoo, all these major US organizations have built-in interfaces for US intelligence. It's not a matter of serving a subpoena. They have an interface that they have developed for US intelligence to use."
Assange suggests that this interface is the result of pressure on the companies to hand over infirmation on a case-by-case basis - automating the process so that intelligence forces can access the data independently is simply easier for them, he says.
He suggests that every time users adds a friend to Facebook they are doing the intelligence services' jobs for them - that's assuming your friends are terrorists or criminals, obviously.
Assange doesn't offer any proof of his allegations, and so far Facebook is maintaining a dignified reticence on the matter. But it's previously said that it hands over information only when forced to do so by the law.
See the full interview at Russia Today, here.