'Anonymous' Hackers Threaten to "Destroy" Facebook on November 5th

Posted by Eric Torres

Aug 12, 2011 10:12:00 AM

anonymouslogoMembers of the notorious hacker group Anonymous have set their sights on taking down Facebook. They have even set a date, November 5th.

The 'hacktivists', infamous for meddling with the American government, launching  cyber-attacks on Sony, News Corp, Amazon, Pay Pal, Master Card, Visa and the Pentagon, among other targets and for their support for WikiLeaks, have announced that they will focus on bringing down the social networking site because of its privacy policy.

The announcement was made in a YouTube video and sites allegations of privacy infringement. Anonymous members accuse Facebook of selling information to government agencies and giving clandestine access to information security firms so they can spy on people from all around the world.

"Everything you do on Facebook stays on Facebook regardless of your 'privacy' settings, and deleting your account is impossible, even if you 'delete' your account, all your personal info stays on Facebook and can be recovered at any time," the statement reads. "Changing the privacy settings to make your Facebook account more "private" is also a delusion. Facebook knows more about you than your family."

The chilling video, a two-minute warning and explanation using a computerized voice, begins: "Attention citizens of the world, your medium of communication you all so dearly adore will be destroyed."

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Topics: Anonymous, Hackers, Hacktivists, attacks, Hacked, Facebook, Network Down

Google + Social Network Arrives

Posted by Eric Torres

Jul 1, 2011 10:20:00 AM

google plus
This week, Google launched its own social network in an attempt to challenge Facebook with a service that ties together all its existing sites including Gmail. Google’s long expected second shot at taking on Facebook in the social networking space has arrived in the form of the Google+ Project. It has some interesting twists on the social networking model but is far from a Facebook-killer.



Google+ is structured in a remarkably similar way to Facebook, with profile pictures and news feeds forming a central core. However, a user's friends or contacts are grouped into specific circles of their choosing - as opposed to the common pool of friends typical on Facebook.

Google+ started rolling out to a limited number of users on Tuesday in what the company is calling a field trial. Only those invited to join will initially be able to use the service. Google did not say when it would be more widely available.

To create Google+, the company went back to the drawing board in the wake of several notable failures, including Google Wave and Google Buzz, a micro-blogging service whose launch was marred by privacy snafus. 'We learned a lot in Buzz, and one of the things we learned is that there's a real market opportunity for a product that addresses people's concerns around privacy and how their information is shared,' said Google spokesman Bradley Horowitz.

As with Facebook's service, Google+ has a central web page that displays an ever-updating stream of the comments, photos and links being shared by friends and contacts. A toolbar across the top of most of Google's sites - such as its main search page, its Gmail site and its Maps site - allows users to access their personalized data feed. They can then contribute their own information to the stream. Google+ will also offer a special video chat feature, in which up to ten people can jump on a conference call. And Google will automatically store photos taken on mobile phones on its Internet servers, allowing a Google+ user to access the photos from any computer and share them.

Want to try the service? Right now, it’s strictly invite only. Some press are being allowed in, along with others that Google hand picks. There’s no ETA on when wider invites will be available. Unusually, this isn’t being called a beta test or an experiment but rather a “field trial” that’s meant to finally gather some feedback from outside Google itself. The limited test is probably wise. It’ll give Google more time to discover things it might not have anticipated being problems, as was the case with Buzz.

For more detailed information and additional video tours of Google + click here.

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Topics: New Service, Concept, Google, Social Media, Communications, Facebook

Call Your Facebook Friends Free with T-Mobile’s Bobsled

Posted by Eric Torres

Apr 20, 2011 10:45:00 AM


After rumors that Skype and Facebook were in talks to add Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) capability to Facebook chat, coming from nowhere, the newly released Bobsled app by T-Mobile just jumped at this opportunity by providing free voice calling to Facebook members worldwide.  Days of calling people with a phone number are numbered.

Bobsled by T-Mobile

T-Mobile has announced a new service named Bobsled and that is worth getting excited about. Why? Because it means that you can make free voice calls through Facebook — even if you're not a T-Mobile customer.

Once you install the app (powered by Vivox), a little phone will appear by online friends’ screen names of those who have the app installed, and placing a phone call is just a click away. Bobsled takes out the need to dial friends’ numbers, or remember screen names, which is required by Bobsled’s competitors on Google Talk and Skype. You can also leave a voice message for your friends and family when they are not available. The messages can be public by posting a link on your friends wall or they can be marked private and will be sent via Private Message.

Bobsled by T-Mobile Voicemail

Bobsled will eventually be a suite of services but T-Mobile is launching it first as an app for people using PC or Mac computers. According to T-Mobile’s official press release, Brad Duea, Senior Vice President, T-Mobile is confident that the service will continue to expand, possibly even to T-Mobile’s mobile platforms.

“Integrated voice on Facebook is a critical part of our roadmap for Bobsled by T-Mobile and Vivox is the clear leader in this area,” said Duea, “Vivox is a talented and innovative company, and we look forward to a successful partnership with Vivox.”

In the near future, T-Mobile plans to evolve Bobsled by T-Mobile to include video chat, the ability to place VoIP calls to mobile and landline U.S. numbers, and will offer applications on smartphones and tablets across various mobile platforms, regardless of the carrier that powers such devices.

If you’re interested in taking advantage of the service, visit www.LetsBobsled.com or look for the free download from Facebook’s mobile app page. From what I can tell, the install is fairly simple and is finished in three steps.

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Topics: New Products, Social Media, Communications, Facebook, VoIP, T-Mobile, Bobsled by T-Mobile

River Run Tech Blog: Facebook Developing VoIP Calling

Posted by Eric Torres

Jan 28, 2011 10:41:00 AM

The social networking phenomenon Facebook is all about connecting people. Plans to add Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) communication to Facebook could be the chosen method of staying in touch for many in the future.  A few Facebook users have started seeing a “Call” button randomly show up when they visit their friends' profiles. The new button doesn't seem to do anything, but it's not too big of a stretch to guess that Facebook wants to start doing VoIP calls.

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Topics: Facebook, VoIP, Cloud-based, Tech News

River Run Tech Blog: Facebook To Improve Messaging

Posted by Eric Torres

Nov 16, 2010 2:08:00 PM

The ever-popular social networking site, Facebook, announced yesterday that it is rolling out a whole new messaging system over the next few months. This new messaging system "isn't just facebook messagee-mail," but integrates four common ways users communicate: email, Facebook messages, chat, and SMS, archiving it all in a single thread.

The new system puts a user's identity above the communication protocol. Facebook Engineer Joel Seligstein said in the company blog, "You decide how you want to talk to your friends...They will receive your message through whatever medium or device is convenient for them, and you can both have a conversation in real time. You shouldn't have to remember who prefers IM over email or worry about which technology to use. Simply choose their name and type a message."

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Topics: Microsoft, New Products, Communications, Facebook

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