Science & Technology

Australia to ‘lift veil’ on Facebook, Google algorithms to protect privacy

Reuters: Australia said it would establish the world’s first dedicated office to police Facebook Inc and Google as part of reforms designed to rein in the US technology giants, potentially setting a precedent for global lawmakers. The move tightens the regulatory screws on the online platforms, which have governments from the United States to Europe scrambling to address concerns ranging ...

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Facebook dodged a bullet from the FTC, it faces many more

After Facebook was hit Friday with a fine of around $5 billion for privacy violations, critics immediately said it escaped largely unscathed: The settlement neither bruised its bottom line nor severely restricted its ability to collect people’s data. Yet even if the Silicon Valley company dodged that bullet, its pain was just beginning. Regulators and lawmakers in Washington, Europe and ...

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US regulators approve Facebook fine of about $5 billion

The Federal Trade Commission voted this week to fine Facebook about $5 billion for mishandling users’ personal information, according to two people briefed on the vote, in what would be a landmark settlement that signals a newly aggressive stance by regulators toward the country’s most powerful technology companies. The agency approved the settlement in a 3-2 vote along party lines, ...

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Twitter scales back its limits on users’ speech

Last August, Twitter’s top executives gathered at the company’s headquarters to discuss how to make the site safer for its users. Two attendees proposed banning all speech that could be considered “dehumanising.” For an example of what they meant, they showed a sample post that featured the words President Donald Trump used to compare certain nations to excrement. By January, ...

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Your data could be at the centre of the fight against big tech

Germany’s top antitrust enforcer, Andreas Mundt, recently asked a room full of lawyers, academics and regulators to imagine a wall filled with their personal information collected by Facebook and Google. He told them to picture it stocked with their data broken up into categories like finances, location, relationships and hobbies. “That is you,” Mundt said. “And I promise you this ...

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Samsung in hot water over splashy Australian phone ads

Australia’s consumer watchdog has sued Samsung Electronics Co Ltd’s Australian unit for allegedly misleading consumers by promoting water-resistant Galaxy smartphones as suitable to use in swimming pools and the surf. The world’s largest smartphone maker did not know or sufficiently test the effects of pool or saltwater exposure on its phones when ads showed them fully submerged, the Australian Competition ...

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Samsung in hot water over splashy Australian phone ads

Australia’s consumer watchdog has sued Samsung Electronics Co Ltd’s Australian unit for allegedly misleading consumers by promoting water-resistant Galaxy smartphones as suitable to use in swimming pools and the surf. The world’s largest smartphone maker did not know or sufficiently test the effects of pool or saltwater exposure on its phones when ads showed them fully submerged, the Australian Competition ...

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Facebook says some users facing outage on its platforms

Facebook Inc said on Wednesday it is working to resolve issues faced by some users while sending media files on its social media platforms including WhatsApp and Instagram. More than 14,000 users reported issues with Instagram, while more than 7,500 and 1,600 users reported issues with Facebook and WhatsApp, according to outage tracking website Downdetector.com. The website’s live outage map ...

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Facebook evacuates four buildings after possible sarin exposure

Facebook Inc evacuated four buildings and two people were being evaluated for possible exposure to the nerve agent sarin on Monday after a package at the social media company’s Silicon Valley mail facility tested positive for the toxic compound. The people who came in contact with the suspicious package at about 11 am PT (1800 GMT) did not show any ...

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