Technology 

Brexit: More than £100K spent on Facebook and other ads for May’s deal

Image copyright Reuters The government spent almost £100,000 on Facebook adverts promoting Theresa May’s Brexit deal before calling off a Commons vote on it, figures released by the US social media giant reveal. Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn branded it a “waste of public money” in the House of Commons on Tuesday. The overall spend on social media adverts by the government is likely to be far higher, however. Ads were also bought on Twitter, LinkedIn and Google, but neither the companies nor the government would tell the BBC how much…

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Australian watchdog wants a regulator for dominant Google, Facebook

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Australia’s competition watchdog on Monday recommended tougher scrutiny and a new regulatory body to check the dominance of tech giants Facebook Inc and Alphabet Inc’s Google in the country’s online advertising and news markets. FILE PHOTO: The Google name is displayed outside the company’s office in London, Britain, November 1, 2018. REUTERS/Toby Melville/File Photo The recommendation, in a preliminary report on the U.S. firms’ market power, is being closely watched around the world as lawmakers wrestle with the powerful tech firms’ large and growing influence in public…

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Australian watchdog calls for more scrutiny of Google, Facebook

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Australia’s competition watchdog on Monday recommended a new regulatory body be set up to monitor tech giants Facebook Inc and Alphabet Inc’s Google and their dominance of the online advertising and news markets. FILE PHOTO – A 3D printed Facebook logo is seen in front of displayed cyber code in this illustration taken March 22, 2016. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) said in a preliminary report on the U.S. firms’ market power that extra oversight was justified to ensure advertisers were treated…

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Facebook to buy back additional $9 billion of shares

A picture illustration shows a Facebook logo reflected in a person’s eye, in Zenica, March 13, 2015. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic (Reuters) – Facebook Inc (FB.O) will buy back an additional $9 billion of its shares, as it looks to pacify investors following a slump in its stock. The social media giant’s shares, which have tumbled more than 22 percent this year, rose nearly 1 percent in extended trading. The new program is in addition to a share buyback plan of up to $15 billion announced by the company last year. Facebook…

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Facebook could threaten democracy, says former GCHQ boss

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Robert Hannigan led GCHQ from 2014 to 2017 Facebook could become a threat to democracy without tougher regulation, the former head of intelligence agency GCHQ has said. Robert Hannigan told the BBC the social media giant was more interested in profiting from user data than “protecting your privacy”. It comes after MPs this week accused Facebook of striking secret deals over user data. The firm has also been criticised for its handling of fake news. In an interview with BBC Radio 4’s Today programme,…

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Facebook defends Mark Zuckerberg’s exposed emails

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Facebook has faced several scandals over the course of 2018 Facebook’s staff feel like they are under siege. Every few days there seems to be a fresh accusation or leak that paints the social network in the worst possible light and calls into question whether it poses a threat to its members, wider society and even democracy itself. The latest barrage came in the form of a tranche of “confidential” internal emails published online by MPs, who have been smarting that chief executive Mark…

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Facebook to check Indian political ads in build-up to vote

A Facebook logo is pictured at the Frankfurt Motor Show (IAA) in Frankfurt, Germany September 16, 2017. REUTERS/Ralph Orlowski NEW DELHI/BENGALURU (Reuters) – Indian advertisers wanting to run political ads on Facebook will have to confirm their identity and location to help prevent abuse of the system in the build-up to national elections, the company said on Thursday. Facebook Inc – under increasing scrutiny following the Cambridge Analytica scandal – said it would start verifying ads from Thursday and, from next year, show a disclaimer on all political ads giving…

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Facebook CEO backed sharing customer data despite second thoughts: documents

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg questioned the business case for giving millions of outside software developers wide access to customer data before endorsing the practice in 2012, according to internal emails published on Wednesday. FILE PHOTO: Facebook’s founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg speaks at the Viva Tech start-up and technology summit in Paris, France, May 24, 2018. REUTERS/Charles Platiau/File Photo The decision made it possible for a quiz app to gather data on about 87 million Facebook users the following year, and later share the information…

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Facebook board backs Sandberg’s request to initiate research into Soros

FILE PHOTO – Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg testifies before a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on foreign influence operations on social media platforms on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., September 5, 2018. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts (Reuters) – Facebook Inc’s board backed Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg’s request to probe whether George Soros had shorted the company’s stock after the billionaire investor called the social network a “menace to society.” “To be clear, Sandberg’s question was entirely appropriate given her role as COO,” Facebook’s board said in a letter on Wednesday. “When a…

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Facebook gave data on user’s friends to certain companies: documents

(Reuters) – Facebook Inc (FB.O) let some companies, including Netflix (NFLX.O) and Airbnb, access users’ lists of friends after it cut off that data for most other apps around 2015, according to documents released on Wednesday by a British lawmaker investigating fake news and social media. A man poses with a magnifier in front of a Facebook logo on display in this illustration taken in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, December 16, 2015. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo The 223 pages of internal communication from 2012 to 2015 between high-level employees, including founder…

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