I have written about various Facebook scams in the past, most of them were not harmful, but they definitely showed how unsafe Facebook was. Now, what if the account of the Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg was compromised? Would you be able to trust the company? Would you be able to really put your private information on the website?
In what could be a embarrassment for Facebook, the fan page of Mark Zuckerberg; the founder of Facebook, was recently hacked. The person who hacked the account wasn’t as nasty as the Bristol Palin Twitter hacker, but he did leave a message on the Facebook fan page reportedly from Mark Zuckerberg.
The message as seen in the screenshot above was spotted by TechCrunch, however, within a few minutes or so the fan page for Mark was taken down. The message that was left says:
Let the hacking begin: if facebook needs money, instead of going to the banks, why doesn’t Facebook let its users invest in Facebook in a social way? Why not transform Facebook into a "social business" they way Nobel Price [sic] winner Muhammad Yunus described it? What do you think? #hackercup2011.
The message was definitely not left by Zuckerberg and even if he did, the entire Facebook page would not be taken down. So if the company’s founders account can be hacked, are we safe enough on Facebook? Can we trust them to take care of our private information? Would the recent security measures at Facebook change any of these things?
It is time to question what you put on Facebook. In the end no one’s account is safe.
Earlier this month, Twitter was playing around with a new setting which allowed users to switch to HTTPS on their website. The feature was eventually pulled out, however, you can always visit Twitter at https://www.twitter.com to use a secure connection.
Facebook, today announced their continued attempts at providing security to their users by allowing users to switch to secure browsing using HTTPS on the site. The new feature is opt-in and users will have to visit their "Account settings" page to turn on HTTPS browsing on Facebook.
To enable HTTPS support on Facebook, head over to this page and click on the "change" link next to "Account Security". You will be shown an option to turn on secure browsing for Facebook. Click on the checkbox next to the option and then hit the Save button to start browsing Facebook securely.
Please note, the secure browsing option is not yet available to all users and will be rolled out gradually. In addition to providing users with secure browsing. Facebook is also going to change the captchas on their site to social authentication. So instead of displaying you with a captcha while adding links or during other activities on Facebook, you will now be shown a picture of your friend and will be asked to identify them.
Instead of showing you a traditional captcha on Facebook, one of the ways we may help verify your identity is through social authentication. We will show you a few pictures of your friends and ask you to name the person in those photos. Hackers halfway across the world might know your password, but they don’t know who your friends are.
The new social authentication is a step towards is to thwart attempts by hackers who could easily crack your passwords but might not know who your friends are. Social Authentication is a beta feature and is being tested out currently, so don’t expect it to be perfect.
You might see a considerable drop in the number of fan page requests from Facebook friends, the next time you login to your Facebook account. It turns out, Facebook has recently removed the “Fan page suggestion” feature for all members of any fan page.
If you are the administrator of a Facebook Fan page, you can still see the “Suggest page to friends” link; while normal members can’t. It’s gone!
Sadly this shouldn’t stop those, who befriend random strangers on Facebook just for the sake of suggesting their website’s official fan page to their entire friend list. Page admins can still suggest their fan page to all friends, which should have been removed too.
However, this should put an end to the cross fan page promotions, which is sometimes very spammy in nature. Mike suggests John’s fan page to his friends, John suggest Mike’s and eventually a large group of page admins join hands to spam their friend list with unnecessary fan page promotion.
For non bloggers and Facebook addicts, this is a huge loss. You have to manually email the link of the fan page to friends or post it on your Facebook wall.
Note: Removal of the “Suggest” button from fan pages can also be a part of bug fixing, as detailed in this post
What about you? Can you still suggest any fan page to your Facebook friends using the “Suggest” button? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
Just a couple of days after the Facebook surprise message scam was unleashed another new Facebook scam is currently underway where users are posting messages on their profile saying "My total facebook views are: xxx. Find your total profile views link".
The new Facebook scam is similar to another one which we had unearthed earlier where people were enticed to click on a link to know "who checked your Facebook profile". Both these scams are similar in nature as to providing users with data that Facebook does not provide them with.
However, you are better off staying away from clicking on the links accompanied with this message. All Facebook is reporting that the number accompanied with the update are inflated and that the survey users are forced to take is basically a waste of time. However, for the developer of the said app, it could mean a lot of money. Remember how Zynga asks users to complete surveys to getting additional virtual money for their games?
So if your friend has updated their profile saying that their profile has been viewed so many times, kindly tell them about the scam and ask them to delete the update from their profile, lest someone else clicks on it.
With all the hoopla going around today about Todd Palin scandal/affair; who happens to be Sarah Palin’s husband and Bristol Palin’s father, the Twitter account of Bristol Palin seems to have been hacked by someone.
If you visit the compromised account of Bristol Palin, you will see her image replaced with the one posted above. In addition to that the hacker has also taken over her timeline posting updates on her behalf. Well, anyone reading that would be able to figure out that the account has been compromised.
As of few minutes ago, the hacker is still posting updates on Bristol Palin’s account. We have reported the account to Twitter and are awaiting further updates.
More to comeâ€¦
I have seen tons of Facebook scams which have been part of my Facebook feed, but for the first time today I came across a new "Facebook Surprise" scam which was sent through a direct message on Facebook.
With the new Facebook message scam, one or more of your contacts will send you a Facebook message saying "I got u surprise random website". The random website could be any website which then redirects you to a page which displays a message similar to the screenshot below.
First off, don’t click on the URL in the message, and secondly don’t click on the Get A Surprise Now message since it will not only send all your contacts a message with the link to the surprise, but also download a nice little surprise to your PC, which could contain Malware or Virus. STAY AWAY FROM IT.
As I have always suggested, don’t click on random links on Facebook. It is very hard to resist, but in the end you are not just affecting yourself but also putting all your Facebook friends in danger of passing it along.
A huge earthquake of 7.4 magnitude has hit Pakistan, Dubai and India. However, the updates about the Earthquake were first reported on Twitter. There has been a steady stream of Earthquake updates from my friends who reside in Pakistan, Dubai and Delhi, where the Earthquake was felt heavily.
Right now reports of the Earthquake suggest that there have been no damages done yet. If you are following or want to follow the updates on the Earthquake, you can do so by visit http://search.twitter.com/search?q=Earthquake or using Real Time updates from Google at this page.
Rest aside, apart from killing celebrities, Twitter is also hugely successful as a source for real news too.
BBC News has picked up on the news you can check it here.
Here is the exact location of the quake in Pakistan – thanks @amit_banerjee
Updates to followâ€¦
Be ready to get more marketing calls and marketing mails in your mailbox soon. Facebook has updated their platform to allow App developers access to your Phone Number and Current Address.
This new announcement was made on the Facebook Developer Blog (source) where they said that new updates to the User Graph object will now allow app developers access to user’s phone number and current address.
Why this information is being made public is not yet known, but it could definitely be used to pass on your data to advertising companies who will then start calling or sending your postal mails. This information is highly paid for in the market since it allows companies to send personalized flyers to your mailbox.
Though Facebook policies state that an app can only access information which is critical to running an app, you can never trust putting such information in the hands of other people. Nevertheless, there might be apps which genuinely require this information too. To be on the safe side make sure to check what permissions an app is requesting from your account before you click the Allow button.
I have completely replaced my Google Reader feeds with Twitter lists, and it helps me to keep up with updates without having to sift through content. I just click on news that I like and read it. In addition to that, Twitter has also become a great way to bring news faster to the masses. A recent example is the Tunisia updates which is being touted as a Twitter revolution, you can read up on all that at Techmeme.
However, along with these wonderful things Twitter is doing, it is also becoming one of the biggest sources of hoaxes. Specially one’s which are connected to some big celebrity dying. In the past month I have seen three of them die (not literally) thanks to updates on Twitter. The most recent one is none other than South Africa’s Nelson Mandela and teen sensation Justin Bieber.
If you visit Twitter right now you will see "RIP JUSTIN BEIBER" and "RIP NELSON MANDELA" as the trending topics. This would give anyone an impression that these two individuals have been dead. This is not the first time that this has happened on Twitter and not the last time this will happen.
In the past celebrities like Eminem, Matt Damon and Harrison Ford have died (fake) on Twitter and then have been resurrected. I am being a bit sarcastic here, but the thing is that just like a good cause, rumors can travel fast too on Twitter, putting fans and the so called dead celebrities at hassle.
Twitter had recently changed their algorithms for trending topics. That algorithm has been a reason why WikiLeaks was not trending. However, Twitter needs work more towards filtering out such stupid rumors too. It is bad for everyone and will diminish Twitter’s authority when it comes to spreading real news.
Close on the heels of Apple App Store’s race to 10 billion downloads, they have reached another milestone, this time on Facebook. The iTunes fan page on Facebook has over 10 million fans.
The iTunes fan page on Facebook is quickly becoming one of the most popular brands on Facebook with over 10 million fans. This milestone would put them in the top 10 brands on Facebook.
The most popular brands on Facebook right now are Coca Cola with close to 22 million fans and Starbucks with 19 million. However, it still has a lot of competition to cover specifically from Oreo, Red Bull, Skittles, Converse and Victoria’s Secret who all have more than 11 millions fan each (cite Fame Count).
These are some huge milestones for Apple, considering that they already topped 10 billion songs download last February. All in all, the App Store and iTunes have been very successful products for Apple and will continue to be so in the future too.
If you are a fan of music or iTunes in general, here is some good news. iTunes will be giving away 10 $500 iTunes coupons to random users to celebrate their 10 million milestone on Facebook. If you want to win an iTunes gift certificate, head over to their iTunes fan page at http://www.facebook.com/iTunes and click on the link to enter the competition.
*You will have to be a fan of iTunes in order to enter the competition.