Facebook Scams: Not Out of the Woods

Facebook may have just won a theoretical warchest from a spammer, but it’s not put its house in order when it comes to scams. Indeed, I suspect they’re getting worse. Now you can get infected without even having to visit your Facebook account. What happens is that, if you have set your profile to receive …

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The Undignified Death of Social Networks

I’m intrigued, and slightly depressed, at how social networking sites deteriorate so quickly into what are little more than scams. I think it started about a year ago, when a number of sites started pulling the stops out to build up membership. Now, it seems, it’s all about the money. Take Quechup, for example, which …

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Nightmare on Spyware Street

A case in Connecticut has exposed the legal dangers of not protecting your computer against spyware, as well as our vulnerability at the hands of incompetent law-enforcement officers. Teacher Julie Amero found herself in a nightmare after spyware on her school computer popped up pornographic images in front of students. Instead of realising this was …

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Puppy Love, Army Trojans and Perfecting the Phone Call

I make an appearance on the excellent Breakfast Club show on Radio Australia each Friday at about 01:15 GMT and some listeners have asked me post links to the stuff I talk about, so here they are. Love on the net Teenage social networking isn’t so bad, according to the MacArthur Foundation. According to the …

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Think Hard Before You Get Linked In

I’ve been trying to remove a contact on LinkedIn who proudly claims to be one of the best linked people on the planet. Why that’s a good thing I’m not sure, but I noticed I was getting LinkedIn spam—spam to my own email address, but coming via LinkedIn–from this person, so I tried to remove …

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The Lost World of Yahoo

This piece was written for a commentary on the BBC World Service Business Daily about Jerry Yang’s decision to resign as CEO. Back in the early days of the World Wide Web there was really only one name. Yahoo. You could tell it was big because it was what you’d type in your browser to …

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Pig Gelatin Proves Oswald Acted Alone

Advances in technology—specifically, in blood spatter analysis and crash test dummies—have been harnessed to prove that it was, in fact, Lee Harvey Oswald who killed JFK. Blood spatter analysis has, apparently, been around for a while, but only recently has it gotten good enough to know what the spatter actually means. (More here, if you …

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Obese Texters, Back to the Future, and Scams

I make an appearance on the excellent Breakfast Club show on Radio Australia each Friday at about 01:15 GMT and some listeners have asked me post links to the stuff I talk about, so here they are. Texting reduces obesity If your kids are getting a little overweight, then treat them to a bit of …

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Video Chat in Gmail

I’m a big fan of Google Talk (Gtalk) but hadn’t come across this before: Videochat inside the Google Talk widget inside Gmail. Does it get any better than this? (Probably, but this works pretty well. Great for those guys not using Windows, and therefore unable to use the great Gtalk client.)

Automating Your Relationships

It’s not for me, but there’s a certain unerring logic about SocialMinder: instead of leaving your social and business relationships to be tended by natural forces, why not automate them? SocialMinder offers just that, by mining your LinkedIn and Gmail address books and notifying you when you last contacted that person. (This is called monitoring …

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