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Facebook Shadow Profiles: What You Need to Know

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fb shadowFacebook shadow profiles. Surely you’ve seen the term bouncing across tech news the past few days, and you’ve got a sense it’s probably some nefarious privacy violation—or just the first fun feature Facebook has introduced in years.
But seriously, are shadow profiles real? Do I have one? Are they bad?
If you use Facebook, then “yes” to all three.
Let’s take a trip into Facebook’s shadowy recesses.

Why are shadow profiles in the news?

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Last Friday, right when most journalists were ready to go home for the weekend, Facebook released some embarrassing news. A bug had exposedthe private email addresses and phone numbers of 6 million of its users.

Though Facebook tried to downplay the significance of the bug, journalists rudely forced to work on a weekend quickly realized there was more to the story than just another data leak: Many of the email addresses and phone numbers exposed were not necessarily ever intentionally given to Facebook.

Instead, they were collected on the sly, stored in Facebook’s secret behind the scenes scaffolding, where it collects troves of data on you you’ve never known about. That data on you that you didn’t know Facebook has? That’s a “shadow profile.”

Who has a shadow profile? Are they real?

Well, potentially everyone who has a Facebook account. They contain a certain amount of information you’re not surprised Facebook knows about you—your name, your interests, your relationship status, how many times you’ve liked your friends posts. But at the same time, Facebook’s been able to smartly collect other data about you. Even if you’ve never told Facebook your phone number, for instance, it might have it. As well as your second and third and fourth email addresses.

So where did Facebook get this data?
Your friends! Or maybe even friends of friends. You can thank anyone who allowed Facebook to scan their mobile phone contacts through the “find friends” feature.
When someone uses this feature, Facebook downloads all of a phone’s contact data to its own servers. This includes mostly emails and phone numbers. At the same time, Facebook is also collecting harder-to track data on how you and all your friends and friends of friends are connected to each other. That’s how it finds people to recommend for its “people you may know” feature.
The company’s mobile app even tells you it will do this:
“Find Friends uploads contacts from your device and stores them on Facebook’s servers where they may be used to help others search for people or to generate friend suggestions for you and others.” (Emphasis added)

Does Facebook have shadow profiles on non-Facebook users?
It makes sense that, with all the contact lists uploaded to its servers every day, Facebook would be able to learn a whole lot of information about people who don’t even have Facebook accounts. But while it has stayed mum on shadow accounts as a whole, the company has asserted it does not collect information on people who don’t actually use Facebook.

Is that legal?
In the United States, probably. Facebook mentioned collecting phone contacts in the Terms of Service that all users must agree to before using the site, so unless the company is collecting additional information it didn’tdisclose, users have already given their consent.
But Europe’s data protection laws are much stronger. Max Schrems, owner of Europe vs. Facebook and privacy rights advocate, launched a complaint against Facebook’s European offices, headquartered in Ireland, citing seven different instances where shadow profiles potentially violate the country’s Data Protection Act (read the PDF here). Schrems asserts that the profiles gathered “excessive amounts of information about data subjects without notice or consent by the data subject. In many cases these information might be embarrassing or intimidating for the data subject.”

How long has this been going on?
Facebook said that its user data has been leaking for over a year. Shadow Profiles have been catalogued at least since August 2011, when Schrems filed his complaint against the company. Facebook has had an iPhone app sinceAugust 2007, and the “Find Friends” feature launched on iPhone and Android in April 2011.

Should I be concerned?
Probably! Especially in light of the recent revelations regarding the National Security Agency’s intrusive spying campaign, PRISM. Facebook was one of nine companies the NSA made deals with to turn over information about users. Since Facebook won’t even confirm it hosts “shadow profiles,” its unclear if that information from shadow profiles could have also been passed along to the NSA. But it’s certainly possible.
In other words, you may have an email address that you’ve never listed anywhere for anyone else to see, but because one of your friends added it totheir contact list, a snooping government agency might just discover it.

Mashable

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Upgraded TECNO SPARK 3 Series with AI Bright Camera launched.

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Upgraded TECNO SPARK 3 Series with AI Bright Camera launched.

By Staff Writer

New TECNO Spark 3 with AI bright camera now available at RRP 429,000 UGX Click here for more

It’s that time of the year when phone manufacturing companies come up with different handset models. TECNO Uganda has today officially launched its newest Series smartphones, the TECNO Spark and the Spark 3 Pro at Sheraton Hotel.

According to Tecno, the two new handset Models are said to be the latest of the Spark Series with improved Camera features among other awesome things. The Camera comes with Artificial intelligence technology (AI Tech) as opposed to their predecessors that is the Spark 2 and 2 Pro.

Both phones run a 9.0 pie Android operating system with a 6.2-inch display LCD capacitive touchscreen with a Trendy and classy appearance. The phones come with improved storage capacity and run 4G LTE.

Definitely the new Series tick the boxes its predecessors failed to.

Some of the Specifications of the spark 3 include:

  • 6.2-inch capacitive display touch screen with an aspect ratio of 19:9
  • Runs Android 9.0 pie operating system (pre-installed on the phone)
  • 4G LTE
  • Face ID
  • 32GB internal storage
  • Quad-core 2.5GHz Media Tek Helio A22 with up to 2GB RAM minimises lagging of applications and renders multi-tasking possible respectively.
  • Finger print Sensor
  • 3,500 mAh Li-ion battery
  • 8MP selfie camera and 13MP + 2MP rear cameras with a LED flash for Bright and better Crisp pictures in poorly lit areas.

Other specifications include Bluetooth V5.0, 3.5mm earphone jack, Wi-Fi, sensors i.e. fingerprint sensor, proximity sensor, G-sensor and Ambient Light sensor, powerVR GE8320 GPU stationed on the phone chip provides quality graphics.

“The success of these latest series Spark 3 and 3 Pro respectively is deemed to surpass its predecessors” narrated the Tecno mobile Uganda Marketing Manager, Gladys Liu speaking at the launch at Sheraton Hotel.

These comments come in review with a positive shift in the sales performance of the Spark 2 and 2pro

The Tecno Spark 3 Series are available in 4 colors; Midnight Black, Bordeaux Red, Aqua blue and champagne Gold.

The smartphones are now up for sale in various smartphone online stores and shops with price tag of UGX429,000 and UGX 489,000 respectively effective of today Monday 6th 2019.

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New WhatsApp update stops users from taking screenshots of private chats

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By independent.co.uk

A new WhatsApp update seems set to stop people screenshotting their private conversations.

The new feature – which comes as part of a suite of security changes, in line with the app’s commitment to privacy – seems strangely integrated.

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It doesn’t appear to block someone taking screengrabs of your chats, perhaps to avoid them being shared with other people, according to WABetaInfo, the blog that first reported on the changes. Instead, it means that you turn on the app’s highest security settings, you won’t be able to take grabs of your own.
The change comes as part of an authentication feature that has been long rumoured but is yet to appear within WhatsApp. That feature allows people to set fingerprint access to conversations, adding a further layer of security so that people can’t get access to your phone and read or send private messages.
However, enabling that fingerprint security feature also turns on the conversation screenshot blocking option, meaning that it isn’t possible to take pictures of your own chats.

It is not clear why the feature works that way, and WABetaInfo expressed confusion about the way it works.

“We do not know why WhatsApp decided to prevent screenshots when fingerprint is enabled, and personally I don’t know if users like the idea,” it wrote in the blog post announcing the discovery.

It is possible for apps to both notify people that things have been grabbed, as with Snapchat’s stories feature. Apps can also ban screenshots entirely – as with Netflix, which stops people from taking screengrabs of its videos – and it appears that is the option that is being enabled within WhatsApp.

The details on the new screenshot blocking come from a very early version of the app that is available to some users on Android. That serves as a testing ground for new features, some of which are changed or removed entirely before they make it out to the public.



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StarTimes launches new brand, you can watch it without a decorder this Christmas

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StarTimes has today launched a new brand that will let you watch StarTimes anywhere anytime. The OTT business StarTimes ON is an online video and TV streaming service dedicated to provide ultimate entertainment and an enriched experience.

“More excellent international and local channels will be put online, and diverse and rich contents will always be the core of StarTimes ON service.” Aldrine Nsubuga Snr Vice President in charge of marketing said.

Top entertainment channels like Novela E plus for telenovelas, AMC Series, ST Bollywood and many others are available for live streaming.

More importantly, popular local FTA channels like Bukedde, NTV,NBS are already on. Football fans can enjoy StarTimes Uganda Premier League, Bundesliga, French League 1 and other sports like boxing, rugby, basketball, cricket can all be enjoyed on World Football, Sports Premium, Sports life channels.

To download and install the StarTimes ON, visit play store or App store or startimestv.com/app

New TECNO Spark 3 with AI bright camera now available at RRP 429,000 UGX Click here for more



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