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A preferred partner ripped off Instagram user data, right under Facebook’s nose

Facebook’s decision to rebrand its Instagram and WhatsApp apps as part of the Facebook empire, seems ironically well-timed as the data privacy sins of the parent were revealed to be as common at the photo-sharing app. Last week it emerged that Instagram allowed its users’ personal data to be violated by an outside company which harvested large amounts of info it wasn’t supposed t...[Read More]

1 billion users now call Google Photos home – at least when it comes to image storage

It’s official. Google Photos now has a billion users on the service, a milestone that took the image sharing-and-storage service a little more than four years to reach. The search giant first shared the information with FastCompany. Google Photos putting a billion users in the rear-view mirror makes it the ninth Google-owned service to do so. The others are (in no particular order): Gmail, G...[Read More]

This time there can be no excuses about whose fault it was for 50m users being hacked

This time Facebook can’t blame a third party for last week’s major hacking of some 50m accounts, nor its seemingly scandalous use of cellphone details for marketing purposes when they were logged as security backup numbers. When the Cambridge Analytica scandal broke, Facebook tried desperately to paint itself as the victim by an outside party that said it would delete user details but didn&#...[Read More]

What if the companies that profit from your data had to pay you?

When it comes to digital privacy, there are plenty of organisations making money out of using your data – Google and Facebook are just two examples. But what if you were the one making the money? What if those organisations profiting from your data had to pay you a share of that earning? This idea – raised in a recent article in Quartz – is gaining ground. American author and law professor Eric Po...[Read More]

Instagram tops 1 billion users, launches IGTV to take on YouTube and co.

Image-posting and aspirational-lifestyle-promotion-service Instagram has crossed the 1 billion users mark, according to an announcement by the company this week. Insta’s also taken the opportunity to launch a new service called IGTV. You get one guess what that does. On the user front, Instagram had 800 million monthly active users calling the service home back in September 2017. They’...[Read More]

Mark Zuckerberg disingenuous about privacy instead of explaining Facebook data collection

What was the most damaging part of Mark Zuckerberg’s testimony to US Congress last week? Was it the admission that Facebook uses cookies to track its users as they surf all over the web, even when they are logged out? Was it that Facebook even tracks people who aren’t users? Was it his refusal to name the hotel he stayed in and who he messaged while expecting his 2.2bn users to be okay with such i...[Read More]

This is how to find out if your data was part of Facebook’s Cambridge Analytica mess

Facebook has begun informing its users which of the 87 million of them had their information gathered and used by Cambridge Analytica for… oh, various unpleasant things, like influencing votes and elections and things of that nature. But you don’t have to wait for Facebook to broadcast a warning at the top of your news feed, which is how the company is going about it. There are other w...[Read More]

Using WhatsApp? You’re now one of a billion

We live in an interesting time, and not (just) the (allegedly) ancient Chinese curse kind. You, the person reading this now, regularly perform actions that are being done by vast numbers of others, on a scale unprecedented in human history. And now you’re doing another one. Which is a fancy way of saying that very popular messaging app WhatsApp, which is owned by Facebook, has hit another mi...[Read More]

How many people in SA are internet users? 21 million, for now

If you’re using this, chances are you’re on the internet. If you’ve just received this in the post, please let us know because the website shouldn’t be doing that. But since you are on the internet, you’ve joined some 21 million other South Africans who make regular use of internet access. Those are figures from the Internet Access in South Africa 2017 study, which wa...[Read More]

Facebook tops 2 billion monthly users, has designs on rest of world

Facebook has been posting some very Dr Evil-like numbers of late and their newest is also their largest yet. The social network is very pleased with itself, announcing that it has topped 2 billion monthly active users for the first time. That’s a decent jump over February this year and adds up to an awful lot of data being voluntarily shared around the world, with the company drilling down i...[Read More]

Facebook tops 1.86 billion users, and other very large numbers

Facebook has been sitting on top of the social media pile for a very long time so it makes sense that there are some large numbers attached to the service. According to its Q4 2016 earnings report we can add a few very big numbers to the monthly users category — 1.86 billion people are using Facebook each month. Of those 1.86 billion, 1.74 billion are using mobile devices to access the servi...[Read More]

Spotify reaches 15 million paid subs, 60 million users total

Yeah, we’re going to twist the knife here a little bit. Music streaming service Spotify (which isn’t officially supported here in South Africa) has announced that the end of 2014 was a very productive time for them, to the tune of 10 million new users. That is, according to figures released by the company recently. Total Spotify users now number 60 million, which is up from 50 million ...[Read More]

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