All posts by Joel Fernandes

Joel Fernandes (G+) is a tech enthusiast and a social media blogger. During his leisure time, he enjoys taking photographs, and photography is one of his most loved hobbies. You can find some of his photos on Flickr. He does a little of web coding, and maintains a tech blog of his own - Techo Latte. Joel is currently pursuing his Masters in Computer Application from Bangalore, India. You can get in touch with him on Twitter - @joelfernandes, or visit his Facebook Profile for more information.

Facebook Pages Manager App Now Lets You Schedule and Promote Posts

Facebook is continuing to make every effort to generate revenue off its mobile platform. The social networking giant has now enabled Facebook Page admins to promote posts right from their smartphones without any difficulties.

The new version of Facebook Pages Manager app enables administrators to promote their posts on Facebook directly from the app. Here are some of the features and additional new feature added to the app:

Features:

  • Post new updates and photos and respond to comments as your Pages
  • View and reply to private messages
  • Get notifications about new activity on your Pages right away
  • View your latest Pages Insights, including check-ins

New Features:

  • Schedule a post to appear later
  • Display stories in two columns on iPad
  • Promote recent posts to reach a bigger audience*
  • Bug fixes and performance updates

Fcebook Page Manager App - Promote Posts

Administrators will see a “Promote” link button on the lower-right of each post. Upon clicking it, administrators will have the ability to purchase promoted posts directly in the app, by using the slider to select the desired dollar amount. Admins will also be able to see the statistics on how effective the post has been once the post is promoted. It also shows the overall reach, including the organic, paid, and viral traffic to the post.

Apart from promoting posts to reach a larger audience, the app also enables users to schedule posts to appear later. It also has an enhancement for the iPad, as users can now see stories in two columns. Additionally, the latest update has bug fixes and includes performance updates.

Facebook launched the Pages Manager app back in May in order to help connect businesses with their audience and keep up with activity on multiple Pages. The app enables business brands to post updates, pictures and respond to comments from fans all from their iPhone or iPad. The app is currently available only on iPhone and iPad.

Google+ Now Has 100 Million Monthly Active Users

Last year in Decmeber, Paul Allen, the one who claims himself as the unofficial Google+ “statistician” predicted that Google+ would reach a new milestone of 400 million users by the end of 2012. Well, the prediction seems to be true now.

In addition to Google’s announcement to acquire Snapseed’s creator Nik software, Vic Gundotra, the Senior Vice President of Engineering for Google, announced a new milestone for Google+: 400 million registered users and 100 million monthly active users. He posted the following statistics in a Google+ post:

This week we also hit an important milestone — over 400,000,000 people have upgraded to Google+. It was only a year ago that we opened public sign-up, and we couldn’t have imagined that so many people would join in just 12 months. While Google+ is all about creating a better experience across Google, it’s also a destination. And here too, I’m happy to report that we have just crossed 100,000,000 monthly active users on Google+ (plus.google.com and mobile app).

The 100 million monthly active users are together combined desktop and mobile users. The social networking giant Facebook on the other hand, boasts of having 955 million active users as of June 30, 2012, with an increase of 29% year-over-year. Google+ is far away from this and it would certainly take a lot more time to compete with Facebook.

Google+ is still in its initial stage and has to work harder to attract its users. Like Facebook, Google also started to notify its users about birthdays of friends. Google is also making an effort to provide its users with vanity URLs, which is perhaps the most awaited feature on the social networking site.

With 100 million monthly active and 400 million registered users, Google+ is now slightly more than one-tenth the size of Facebook out of which, one-third of the total users are located in the US.

Stay Privately Connected Facebook Hoax

A new hoax message appears to be spreading on Facebook, and this time it is about Facebook’s privacy issues. According to the message, users are requesting to be privately connected with thier friends in order to avoid friends of friends to view activities like photo “likes” and comments.

Here is the hoax message that has gone viral on Facebook:

“To all my FB friends, may I request you to please do something for me: I want to stay PRIVATELY connected with you. However, with the recent changes in FB, the public can now see activities in any wall. This happens when our friends hit “like” or “comment”, automatically, their friends would see our posts too. Unfortunately, we cannot change this setting by ourselves because Facebook has configured it this way. So I need your help. Only you can do this for me. PLEASE place your mouse over my name above (do not click), a window will appear, now move the mouse on “FRIENDS” (also without clicking), then down to “Settings”, click here and a list will appear. REMOVE the CHECK on “COMMENTS & LIKE” by clicking on it. By doing this, my activity amongst my friends and my family will no longer become public. Many thanks! Paste this on your wall so your contacts would follow suit too, that is, if you care about your privacy.”

The message is a hoax and most of it contains inaccurate information. Facebook has not done any recent changes to its privacy settings that enable the “public” to view your Facebook activities, unless you have set your privacy settings to “Public”.

From the message, it is known that users are concerned about their activities and photos being visible to friends of friends when a particular friend “likes” or comments on it. These activities are not shown on their news feed, but actually dislayed on the rolling real time list of what your friends are doing – the Facebook Ticker.

If you’re concerned about what you post on your Timeline could be visible to friends of friends via the Facebook Ticker, then there’s a solution to avoid that – Stop using the “Friends of friends” setting. This is why every second degree contacts will be able to view your posts and photos that your friend “likes” or comments on.

To change this, go to your Facebook privacy settings and click the edit settings of “Timeline and Tagging,” and change the visibility to “Friends” only:

Timeline and Tagging

 

However, to avoid this, you will have to convince your friend/s to do the same. Additionally, “limit” all previous posts you have made via the privacy settings – According to what Sophos says, “this will change everything to “friends” only and will stop people you deleted but did not block, people who sent you friend requests that you ignored, and friends of friends from seeing your activity.”

Stay Away from ‘WhatsAppDude,’ a Fake Facebook App Site

Facebook with over 950 million users has always been the target to spread bogus links and scam messages. Scammers have also created Facebook apps that help them to spread scam messages across the social networking site.

In order to trick users, scammers design web pages that look similar to a Facebook page by using the same combination of colors and fonts that Facebook uses. We found once such website called “WhatsAppDude,” which has been tricking users into using fake Facebook apps and try to collect user information in the background without the user’s knowledge.

The site also uses the sub-domain fb. whatsappdude.com in order to make it appear as a real Facebook application site. Some of the fake apps that we found on the website are:

  • Find your mental age
  • Find what Google says about you?
  • Find your funny death forecast.
  • What your birthday says about your career?
  • What does your eye color say about you?
  • How old do you look?
  • Find your true love’s name
  • Fool my friend
Whatsappdude - Fake Facebook App Site

Surprisingly, none of these apps are actually served by Facebook as they are hosted by a third-party web server. When you try to use these apps, you are asked to connect it with you Facebook profile. The app named “whatsappdude” will be asked to grant permissions to access your information on Facebook, including your personal details, and also post updates on your behalf.

Granting the app with these permissions will spam your Timeline with scam messages, which in turn may trick your Facebook friends.

According to WOT’s Scorecard, it is know that the site has a poor reputation:

WOT "whatsappdude" Rating

WOT’s reputation ratings are based on real user ratings and they tell you how much other users trust this site.

The site “whatsappdude” is highly not recommended, and in case you have visited the site and granted permissions to the app to use your Facebook details, we advise you to immediately revoke its access. In order to do so, go to your Facebook Account Settings and click on the “App” option on the left menu. Click on the “x” mark on the right-hand side of the app, and confirm that you want to stop using it. You can also delete all the app activity since the time of its installation.

Scams on Facebook are quite difficult to identify. We have provided some tips on How to Identify and Avoid Facebook Scams, and also share them with your friends on Facebook. Bookmark Techie Buzz Facebook Scams or Subscribe to Scam Alert Feed. We always keep you updated with the latest scams spreading on Facebook.

Google Starts Notifying Users About Birthdays

Birthday reminders are nothing new to social networking sites and we already know how useful and popular it is on Facebook. Now, Google is adding a similar feature on Google Plus and its others services reminding you about someone in your circles is celebrating his/her birthday.

Irene Chung, Staff Software Engineer at Google, updated her Google Plus profile with the following post:

Everyone deserves a little love on their birthday, so we’re making it easier for you and your friends to celebrate on Google. Starting today, you’ll see a reminder on Google.com when someone in your circles has a birthday! From there it’s easy to share a fun message, photo, or video with the birthday gal or guy.

With this new birthday reminders feature, Google is trying to push notifications into search page results, which perhaps is part of their marketing strategy for its social networking site Google+ along with its other online services and products.

To allow people in your circles to be reminded of your birthday, you first need to update your birth day and grant Google the permission to show the notification. To do so, go to https://plus.google.com/up/birthday and set you date of birth. You can also set the visibility of your birthday as to who can view you it. You can either make it visible to public or only to your circles (or a specific circle only).

Please note, by default, your date of birth (day and month only) will be visible to people in Your Circles. You can change it by using the above mentioned link.

Irene added that birthday reminder notifications are currently available only if you’re searching in English on Google.com. It will be rolled out all users in the next few days. We also expect that this feature will be available to all other languages as well.

Facebook to Identify and Delete Fake Page “Likes”

This is perhaps disappointing news for brands that have spent a few hundred bucks to boost the number of “likes” for their Facebook brand page, as Facebook on Friday announced that it is going to identify such fake page “likes” and delete them.

The Facebook “like” factor has been there for a long time. Most brands, or at least start-ups, look forward to get as many “likes” as possible in order to portray that their brand has been loved by so many fans. It also plays an important role in legitimizing the brand. Thus, brands that are not really up to the mark go for paid Facebook “likes” to boost its credibility, and this definitely violates Facebook terms.

However, things will change from now. The social networking giant Facebook has clearly stated out that it has a system in place to identify and remove “likes” on Facebook pages that may have been gained by means that violate our Facebook Terms.

Facebook

Facebook states:

“We do not and have never permitted the purchase or sale of Facebook Likes as we only want people connecting to the Pages and brands with whom they have chosen to connect. Beyond the need to maintain authentic relationships on Facebook, these third-party vendors often attempt to use malware or other forms of deception to generate fraudulent Likes, which is harmful to all users and the internet as a whole.”

The new automated system will remove Facebook fake “likes” that were generated by compromised accounts, purchased bulk “likes,” or malware program that tricked people into clicking the “like” button. Facebook wants brands to follow on the principle of real identity. It wants brands to have authentic, real, and interested users to connect with the brands.

Last month, Facebook filed some new documents with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), from which it was revealed that nearly 14 million (out of the 955 million) Facebook accounts are used to spread scam and spam messages across the network.

This improvement, according to Facebook, will allow brands to produce ever more relevant and interesting content, and will see an increase in the true engagement around their content.

Wow! Your Photo is Cool Twitter Spam

There’s seems to be a spam message spreading on Twitter, where users are posting and re-tweeting about a photo with a shortened URL to a website. The message spreading is “WOW! your photo is cool” along with a link.

Spammers have created a Twitter bot that has been randomly sending the spam message to Twitter users by mentioning them in the tweet. When you search on Twitter for the message, you will see a number RTs and @ replies the message has received. The results are displayed in real-time and you can also notice the number of tweets flowing in related to the message.

Your Photo is Cool - Twitter Spam

Upon clicking the link, you will be redirected to a bogus page where you will be asked to download an application program. Please DO NOT download this whatsoever as this is a malware program that is designed to steal user information.

Generally, malware programs collect information such as email id, passwords, contact numbers in the background and sends them to the automatically to scammer without your knowledge. It is recommended that you avoid clicking on any suspicious links on Twitter or Facebook.

Sometimes you will be redirected to your Twitter profile and ask permission to install an app. Such apps will then send out rogue messages as a direct message to all your followers and continue spreading the malware message across the social networking site.

You will also get a warning message from your browser indicating that the site you are visiting could be potentially harmful to your computer as such:

Chrome Warning

There are a number of scam messages spreading on Twitter and Facebook, and it advised to be careful before clicking any links. Some of the phishing attacks on Twitter have spread through DM messages like “You Seen What This Person is Saying About You Terrible Things” and “Somebody is Saying Real Bad Rumors About You“.

Funny, but Samsung Did Not Pay Apple $1bn in 5 Cent Coins

Over the past few days, the Internet has sparked with Apple-Samsung verdict as the federal jury slapped Samsung with a $1 billion penalty for violating Apple’s patent rights. In the wake of this, there have been rumors spreading in the past couple of days that Samsung cleared the $1 billion penalty by paying it in 5 cent coins.

The rumor on Samsung paying Apple in nickels spread like wildfire. It is reported to be spreading from the website MobileEntertainment, however, it is known that it originated from a Mexico-based parody website El Deforma, which was then carried over by 9gag users and made it as a cartoon.

Samsung Galaxy

The actual message that was spreading across Twitter and Facebook was this:

“Yesterday, more than 30 trucks filled with five cent coins arrived at Apple’s headquarters in California. Apple security were in the process of freaking out before Apple CEO Tim Cook was called by Samsung explaining that they will pay all of the $1.05 billion they owe Apple in coins, and this was the first instalment”.

Funny, but sadly this is not true and Samsung did not pay Apple by sending trucks filled with nickels. When I first read about it and tweeted stating that it is a hoax, I never thought the same rumor would spread this far.

Twitter user Ken Tindell tweeted, “a nickel weighs 5g. It would take 2,755 18-wheeler trucks (max legal tare 80,000 lbs) to carry the money.” Just for fun, here’s how much a billion dollars in nickels would weigh: At 5g each that’s 0.005 kg x 20,000,000,000 = 100,000,000 kg = 100,000 tonnes.

As a matter of fact, Samsung hasn’t been ordered to pay the $1 billion to Apple yet. It’s just a jury’s verdict. According to  The Guardian, “Samsung’s fine ($1.049bn) isn’t yet payable; the judge hasn’t ruled. All we have is the jury’s verdict. The judge’s decision, which could include a tripling of the fine, is due on 20 September (or possibly 6 December now; it’s unclear). Until then, Samsung only has to pay its lawyers. That should be less than $1bn”.

The funny part was Yahoo considered this as story and featured it on one of its pages!

[via]

Facebook Timeline Posting Users’ Location Data

Facebook is definite about making the new Timeline mandatory to all Facebook users, and has already started to automatically roll it out to those who are still using the old profile layout. This forced change has raged several users already, but looks like there’s more to add to it.

If you’re already using Facebook Timeline, you must be aware of the location feature, which allows you to share your current location with your friends from where you are posting an update. It is now reported that the feature is enabled by default and is now displaying a map with the location of the user posts something to Facebook.

Facebook Location Map

As reported by Search Engine Journal, “This map appears as a hyperlinked location tag at the end of a wall post after the ‘Like . . .’ and ‘Date.’ For example, if you posted last night from your San Francisco home, your post might end with ‘Yesterday at 9:18pm near San Francisco.’”

This change in the Facebook Timeline has raised concerns among many users who wish to keep their location private. If you’re concerned about your privacy on Facebook, and are looking for a way to disable or remove Facebook maps, then follow the steps below:Remove Facebook Maps

  • Go to your Facebook profile or your Timeline.
  • Simply expand the boxes by clicking the down arrow located below the Activity Log.
  • Now, hover over the top right corner of your ‘Map’ to display the edit icon.
  • Click the little pencil and then select ‘Remove from Favorites’.

For some users, Facebook has become really painful to use with so many new and unwanted features being implemented. I’m pretty sure that almost half of Facebook users are not aware of the various features that it offers. It is unclear if Facebook is implementing these changes only because it fears that it could be the next MySpace, or the next Orkut. What are your thoughts on this?

Your Friend Added a New Photo with You Facebook Scam

Facebook users are being warned about an email that may appear like an official Facebook email notification, which indicates that the user has been tagged in a photo by a close friend. The email contains attachments that are actually malware programs, which could be harmful to your computer.

According to this report by Naked Security, the email contains the subject line, “Your friend added a new photo with you to the album,” along with the following message:

Greetings,

One of Your Friend added a photo with you to the album.

You are receiving this email because you’ve been listed as a close friend.

[View photo with you in the attachment]

Facebook Email Scam

The link contained in the email will download an malware program, which could be designed to steal user information. Sophos products intercept the malware as Troj/Agent-XNN. This program copies itself to “C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\svchost.exe” and also create a registry key as “HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run

If you receive any such email that is claiming to be from Facebook, simply mark it as spam. Facebook does not send email notification about photo tags with any attachments in it. If in case you have accidently clicked on the attachment, then it is recommended that you scan your computer for any malware programs.

Such scam messages are common, and the scammers who create these messages mainly target Facebook users as they can easily get users to fall for such tricks.

Facebook currently has over 950 million users visiting per month, and the social networking giant has always been the main target for spreading scam messages. Although it is quite difficult to identify scams on Facebook, we have provided some tips on How to Identify and Avoid Facebook Scams. Bookmark Techie Buzz Facebook Scams or Subscribe to Scam Alert Feed. We always keep you updated with the latest scams spreading on Facebook.