-- Tom Ilube is chief executive officer of online security firm Garlik. The views expressed are his own. --

Facebook's announcement that they are taking a new approach to their policies on the use of personal data is a quantum leap. By allowing users a greater role in its governance, the world's most popular social network has set the benchmark for all organisations holding an individual's personal information.

It is a brave and important move for Facebook: by allowing users to have a say in the way that their personal information is used and distributed, consumers will finally be allowed to take control of their digital identities.

In the past couple of weeks, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has oscillated from holding on to people's information forever to the position he announced today - giving users the chance to have a say on what happens to this data.

Facebook has learned the hard way that consumers value transparency above everything else. The world watches their every move and this naïve attempt to change their terms and conditions, without fully consulting their users, meant there was an inevitable loss of credibility.