Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram in worst ever worldwide outage for the internet giant

Facebook said it was “back at 100 percent” after an outage on all of its services affected users in various parts of the world. Online monitoring service DownDetector reported on Wednesday that the outage began around 12:00 GMT and affected Facebook as well as its Instagram and WhatsApp services. “The issue has since been resolved and we should be back at 100 percent for everyone,” the company tweeted at 00:06 GMT on Thursday, adding they were sorry for “any inconvenience”. A Facebook spokesperson, also speaking on behalf of Instagram and…

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Google debuts Google News Initiative challenge for Middle East, Africa, Turkey

Google on Tuesday opened the Google News Initiative (GNI) challenge for media publishers in the Middle East, Africa and Turkey. The Head of Google News Initiative Innovation, Ludovic Bleacher, made the disclosure at the unveiling of the initiative in Lagos. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Google News Initiative is a journalism-focused programme that will help publishers earn money and fight fake news. It will also introduce an open-source tool called Outline, which will make it easier for news organisations to set up secure access to the…

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Has your Instagram account been hacked? You can recover it this way

Previously, if your Instagram account was taken over by an attacker, recovering it would require wading through choppy customer support, or calling for assistance from white-hat hackers. Now, Instagram is rolling out new measures to help you get your account back more easily. On Monday, Instagram announced it is testing changes that could make it easier for users to regain access to hacked accounts, as well as security features that could make it harder to steal Instagram usernames in the first place. The news comes after a wave of Instagram…

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WhatsApp to roll out a feature to block others from adding you to groups

In a very much welcomed move, Facebook-owned WhatsApp has announced that it will roll out a feature in the coming weeks that gives users much more control over group chats in the app. The company will soon add a new privacy tool to the app that allows a user to block anyone from adding them to a group chat. The feature comes as concerns have mounted over the past few years that WhatsApp group chats are being used to spread fake news and disinformation. Under the new controls, a user…

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WhatsApp to limit text to 5 individuals or groups to reduce fake news

WhatsApp launches end-to-end encryption on messages for all its users

n its efforts to fight fake news and it’s spread, Facebook-owned messaging service WhatsApp has announced that it has globally lowered the forward limit for chats to five contacts or groups. “We’re imposing a limit of five messages all over the world as of today,” Victoria Grand, vice president for policy and communications at WhatsApp, said at an event in the Indonesian capital. Before, WhatsApp allowed users globally to forward messages for up to 20 chats (either individuals or groups). VentureBurn reports that WhatsApp first initiated the lower limit in India back…

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Older users over 65 yrs shared more fake news, New York and Princeton Universities researchers reveal

According to a new analysis by researchers at New York and Princeton Universities. Older users shared more fake news than younger ones regardless of education, sex, race, income, or how many links they shared. In fact, age predicted their behavior better than any other characteristic — including party affiliation. Today’s study, published in Science Advances, examined user behavior in the months before and after the 2016 US presidential election. In early 2016, the academics started working with research firm YouGov to assemble a panel of 3,500 people, which included both…

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Facebook handed over 150 companies intrusive access to your data

Facebook gave over 150 companies almost unfetted intrusive access to users’ data than previously admitted, exempting them from its usual privacy rules, according to the New York Times. It has emerged that companies like Amazon, Apple, Microsoft, Netflix, Spotify, and Yandex had special arrangements to retain access to users’ data (and data on their friends), despite platform changes in 2014 that restricted the practice. For example: — Netflix and Spotify were able to read users’ private messages — Microsoft had access to the names of virtually all users’ friends, without consent…

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Facebook Transparency Report reveals fewer user data requests by African Governments

According to the recently released Facebook Transparency Report for the six months from January to June 2018, demands by African governments for information on Facebook users remain low compared to other countries, Globally over the six-month period there were 103 815 requests and in 74% of those requests Facebook produced some data. This was a 26.1% increase when compared to the last six months of 2017, when there were 82 341 requests. It is also an increase of 31.6% from the first half of last year, when there were 78…

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Nearly half of young users have deleted Facebook, Pew survey shows

Pew surveyed more than 3,400 U.S. Facebook users in May and June, and found that a whopping 44 percent of those ages 18 to 29 say they’ve deleted the app from their phone in the last year. Some of them may have reinstalled it later. Significant shares of Facebook users have taken steps in the past year to reframe their relationship with the social media platform. Just over half of Facebook users ages 18 and older (54%) say they have adjusted their privacy settings in the past 12 months, according…

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Facebook, Instagram hit by 13hr outage, Zuckerberg not stepping down as chairman

Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp were yesterday hit by a 13-hour outage that affected some users throughout the world, the company confirmed. The outage comes at a particularly sensitive time when businesses use Facebook and Instagram to promote pivotal Black Friday sales, some of which have already started. “Earlier today, a server configuration caused intermittent problems across all apps globally creating a degraded experience for users. The issue has since been resolved, we are back to 100 percent for everyone and we’re sorry for any inconvenience,” a Facebook spokesperson told ABC…

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