Items tagged with Facebook

Facebook has announced that new features are being added to Messenger, which aim to make it a safer place to connect and chat with friends and family. One of the new controls is a safety feature that will help millions of people avoid potentially harmful interactions and possible scams without compromising privacy. Facebook's strategy to keep people safe on Messenger is focused on giving users the information and controls needed to prevent abuse from happening, and detecting abuse and responding quickly if it occurs. Safety notices have been introduced in Messenger that will pop up in a chat and provide tips to help people spot suspicious activity. The safety notices that do pop up will give... Read more...
Video calls have become all the rage over the last few months and Zoom remains one of the most popular choices for group video chat. However, recent security issues have caused many to look for alternatives. Facebook recently launched “Messenger Rooms”, a video chat service for up to 50 users and it just became widely available to users. Here is how you can set-up a group call on Messenger Rooms. How To Create A Facebook Messenger Room If you are the host of a video chat, you will need a Facebook account. If you are creating the “room” through a mobile app, you will want to double-check that you have the most recent version of the Facebook and Messenger mobile... Read more...
Many Facebook app users are likely familiar with Giphy, as the API for the animated GIF service is integrated with the website. Facebook says that 50% of Giphy's traffic comes from the Facebook family of apps, with half of that traffic from Instagram alone. For those unfamiliar with Giphy, it's described as a leader in visual expression and creativity. Users will know it as the service that allows you to add gifs and short video clips as a comment on a post rather than typing a message. Facebook has now announced that it has purchased Giphy and will make it part of the Instagram team (the purchase price was a cool $400 million according to Axios). Facebook says that by putting Instagram and its... Read more...
Video and text chatting applications are seeing exponential growth during the coronavirus pandemic as people stuck at home try to keep in touch with friends, family, and coworkers. Facebook has announced that its latest take on video chatting, called Messenger Rooms, is now available to everyone in North America, and will be available globally in the next week. CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced availability in a Facebook post, noting that people around the world are relying on video chat to feel connected with the people they care about. Zuckerberg says WhatsApp and Messenger are the most popular video calling services globally. Still, many of the video services out there for large groups are meant... Read more...
The redesigned Facebook desktop UI is rolling out to everyone, and one of the best things about this update is that it brings a dark mode. Anyone who ever gets on Facebook in a darkened room knows the feeling the traditional all-white interface gives. It's almost as if the sun is a few inches from your face. Many Facebook users will want to enable Dark Mode as soon as possible, and here's how you do it. The steps to enable Dark Mode are very simple. Click the upside-down triangle in the top right corner of the new Facebook page. It will open a screen that has your name at the top and stacked links for Give Feedback, Settings & Privacy, Help & Support, and the Dark Mode slider. Click the... Read more...
Facebook has introduced a new way for friends or coworkers to get together during the coronavirus pandemic, called Messenger Rooms. Facebook says that Messenger Rooms was designed to allow people to spend "quality time with friends, loved ones, and people who share their interests." Users can create a room from within Messenger or Facebook and then invite anyone to join the video call, even if they don't have a Facebook account. Messenger Rooms "will soon" hold up to 50 people with no time limit. Users can start and share rooms on Facebook through News Feed or Groups and Events. The social network says that it intends to soon add ways to allow users to create Rooms from Instagram Direct, WhatsApp,... Read more...
Facebook is launching a new live gaming app called Facebook Gaming: Watch, Play, and Connect. The app marks Facebook's most significant move into the video game segment coming at a time when people are stuck indoors due to the coronavirus and looking for ways to relax. The app is offered at no cost and is designed for creating and watching live gameplay allowing Facebook to battle directly against Twitch, YouTube, and Mixer. The Facebook Gaming app was supposed to launch in June, but Facebook launched early to take advantage of the hordes of people around the country, and the world, who are stuck at home. The person in charge of the Facebook app is Fidji Simo, who reports directly to Mark Zuckerberg.... Read more...
It should come as no surprise that video conferencing software is seeing a sudden uptick in usage—more people are telecommuting in order to social distance themselves amid the COVID-19 outbreak. Zoom is among the beneficiaries of the current situation, though not without controversy. New research indicates that Zoom's iOS app is sending analytical data to Facebook on the sly. Apps sending information to Facebook is not the least bit uncommon. Many apps and services tie their offerings into Facebook, and it can be convenient for users who do not want to juggle yet another account. But when it comes to sharing analytical data, that sort of thing should be made clear to users, and require... Read more...
The government is urging people to keep their distance from others to help slow and prevent the spread of the coronavirus. The government is currently in talks with Facebook and Google along with a range of other technology companies and health experts to determine how they may be able to use location data gathered from smartphones to glean information about the coronavirus. Public health experts believe that private companies may be able to compile data in an anonymous and aggregated form that could be used to map the spread of the infection. Details of the talks come from a trio of unnamed sources cited by the Washington Post, which claim that the project is in the early stages. While analyzing... Read more...
For a period of time yesterday, Facebook was on the fritz, blocking content that did not run afoul of any rules, including posts on the coronavirus. However, those were not the only ones. As our own Marco Chiappetta noted, some of his boxing friends had posts blocked about Roger Mayweather's death, while others had entertainment related posts flagged and removed. "Count me in. My post on letting seniors in grocery stores early for shopping during the crisis was marked invisible for being against community standards," our own Dave Altavilla noted in response to Marco's Facebook post. Quite frankly, I could have done without the news that the greatest quarterback of all time, Tom Brady, had decided... Read more...
WhatsApp is popular because its end-to-end encryption gives users warm fuzzies over the privacy and security of their chats. However, the chat messaging application might not be quite as secure or private as you thought (or at least that was the case). That's because Google had been indexing links to group chats, which in turn allowed any Joe or Jane to join and see potentially private information. Apparently this had been going on for several years. As a result, there were hundreds of thousands of indexed chat group links on the web, all of which were a simple Google search away. Your WhatsApp groups may not be as secure as you think they are. The "Invite to Group via Link" feature allows groups... Read more...
U.S. lawmakers have been on a mission to kill end-to-end encryption as we known it. And we're not just talking about killing encryption (or at least providing backdoors) on devices like iPhones or the Google Pixel 4, but also online software platforms from Facebook and Google. The bill is entitled "The Eliminating Abuse and Rampant Neglect of Interactive Technologies Act of 2019,” which of course has to work out to some hip catchphrase, which in this case is the "EARN IT Act". Sponsors of the bill include Senators Lindsay Graham (R) and Richard Blumenthal (D). At its heart, the senators claim that the legislation is aimed at stopping child sexual abuse and the exploitation of... Read more...
“Dark mode” or “night mode” has long been popular with tech users. It is also now increasingly being adopted by major apps and operating systems. However, is dark mode simply an aesthetic preference or can it provide benefits to users? Companies and services like Google, Apple, and Facebook offer or plan to offer dark mode to help reduce eyestrain, increase battery life, and decrease display flickering.  Many apps and operating systems tend to prefer light user interfaces (UI). This brighter interface or “dark-on-light color scheme” was originally introduced in word processors to mimic the look of dark ink on light paper. A light UI is generally considered... Read more...
Tax season is upon us, and one thing nobody wants to deal with is getting audited. In a sense, however, that is what some major tech corporations have to deal with, as the Federal Trade Commission announced it is looking into hundreds of prior acquisitions made by Alphabet (including Google), Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Microsoft. The FTC is essentially asking major tech companies to open their books and make sure that everything is on the up and up. It also wants to "deepen its understanding" of how large technology handle acquisitions, including they get reported to federal antitrust agencies, and whether some of the smaller mergers fall under the radar of potentially being anti-competitive.... Read more...
Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg published an article today that says one of the main goals of the social network in 2020 is to build "much stronger privacy protections for everyone on Facebook." Zuckerberg says that Facebook knows it has a lot of work to do in that realm, which is why it's making it a priority not only for the teams at Facebook but for Zuckerberg personally. Since today is Data Privacy Day, Zuckerberg says that he wanted to share some of the work his company is doing to give users more control over privacy both on and off Facebook. Over the next few weeks, Facebook will start showing nearly 2 billion people around the world a prompt encouraging them to review privacy... Read more...
Facebook announced it plans to crack down on the proliferation of video content that has been manipulated in certain ways to appear as authentic and intentionally misleading. Also known as "deepfakes," these kinds of videos use artificial intelligence and machine learning techniques to superimpose content onto a video clip. The timing of Facebook's decision to beef up its enforcement of misleading videos comes during the early part of a US presidential election year. This is the fourth year of US President Donald Trump serving as the command in chief, and barring an unlikely eviction through an impeachment trial in the Republican-led Senate, he will seek re-election. It is important to note that... Read more...
Welp, the days of being able to sign up for Facebook's Messenger service without also being a member of the social network are apparently over. If you have friends and family members who have been bugging you to hop on board Messenger, you will need to create a Facebook account to do so, if you do not already have one. This applies to new users only. Anyone who already registered a Messenger account without an accompanying Facebook account can continue to use the messaging service as normal, at least for the time being. "If you’re new to Messenger, you’ll notice that you need a Facebook account to chat with friends and close connections," A spokesperson at Facebook said in a statement... Read more...
Facebook can't seem to do anything right when it comes to privacy. Despite that fact, people continue to use the social network, and the latest privacy issue has exposed the phone numbers of 267 million users. The phone numbers were in a database that included both phone numbers and Facebook user IDs. Security researcher Bob Diachenko along with Comparitech discovered the Elasticsearch database. They believe that the database belongs to a cybercriminal organization rather than Facebook. Diachenko went to the ISP managing the IP address to remove it. The database was left unsecured on the web for nearly two weeks before it was removed. The team says that such an extensive database is likely being... Read more...
In an effort to lessen its dependence on established operating systems, including Android and iOS, Facebook is developing its own from the ground up. One reason why this is important to Facebook is because it is so involved with hardware in the virtual reality space, with its acquisition of Oculus and future plans. The situation sort of reminds me of how Valve viewed Microsoft with the release of Windows 8. There was fear that Microsoft would build a walled garden, and Valve reacted by developing SteamOS based on Linux. It was part of a broader strategy that also included Steam Machines, which never really became the massive success Valve had hoped. Facebook finds itself in a different spot,... Read more...
Facebook has been fighting with the U.S. government and the governments of other countries over end-to-end encryption plans that would block anyone, Facebook included, out of chat conversations on Instagram, WhatsApp, and Facebook Messenger. The Federal government doesn't like that as it says that encrypting everything gives abusers a place to practice their craft without fear of being caught by authorities. Facebook's WhatsApp already has end-to-end encryption, but the social network wants to apply that to Facebook Messenger and Instagram. At a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, Sen. Lindsey Graham said that if Facebook didn't add the backdoor, "we're going to do this for you." In response,... Read more...
Facebook is testing a new data tool that will enable its users to more easily transfer their uploaded photos over to Google Photos, if that is what they want to do. It is actually available right now to people in Ireland. Worldwide availability is planned for the first half of 2020, and in the meantime, Facebook said it will continue making refinements to the tool. "We want to build practical portability solutions people can trust and use effectively. To foster that trust, people and online services need clear rules about what kinds of data should be portable and who is responsible for protecting that data as it moves to different services. We hope this product can help advance conversations... Read more...
In this day and age, online account security is constantly under attack by nefarious parties that are looking to settle scores, makes a few bucks, or simply trying to make a name for themselves. 2K Games found this out the hard way last night after a number of its social media accounts were hacked in a massive security breach for the game publisher. Not only was the company's Facebook account compromised, but its Twitter profile was also taken over by foul-mouthed pranksters. One social media account being compromised is bad enough, but this was a coordinated attack across multiple mediums, which is much more troubling security problem for 2K Games. Messages posted to Facebook and Twitter consisted... Read more...
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