Tech News

How Israeli company's spyware was used to hack phones of activists, journalists and officials around the world: report

The Washington Post is reporting that an Israeli-based company used spyware to hack journalists around the world.

According to the report, the spyware was "military-grade" so that the government could track terrorists. Still, it was used to hack 37 smartphones that belonged to journalists, human rights activists, business leaders and women close to reporter Jamal Khashoggi, who was murdered by the Saudi government.

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Trump is going to sue Twitter and Facebook for banning him: NYT's Haberman

New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman is reporting that former President Donald Trump intends to sue Twitter and Facebook for banning him.

Trump on Tuesday night teased a major announcement that he will be making on Wednesday -- but Haberman revealed that the major announcement will be about lawsuits he's bringing against social media giants who booted him off in the wake of the deadly riots he incited at the United States Capitol building.

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Mike Pompeo and Marjorie Greene were hacked on pro-Trump social media site GETTR

While Americans were celebrating the birth of the nation, Republicans were getting hacked on the new pro-Donald Trump social media site GETTR.

According to The Wrap, Mike Pompeo and Marjorie Taylor Greene were among those who were hacked by people posting pro-Palestine messages and phrases.

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Right Wing Watch reinstated after YouTube experiences massive backlash

YouTube has reconsidered their deletion of the RightWingWatch account that chronicled years of far-right extremism often hidden in the shadows.

The group, run by the People for the American Way (PFAW), appealed all of YouTube's rulings but the site ignored them, deciding to shut down the page regardless. Ironically, what RWW found was that many of the videos that they cut and uploaded for their own purposes came from larger clips that were still allowed from YouTube.

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UPDATED: YouTube destroys large documentary evidence of right-wing extremism — while leaving extremist accounts live

UPDATE: After extensive backlash, YouTube reconsidered and reinstated the account. Read more about it here.

The Google-run site YouTube has destroyed the one of the greatest repositories of right-wing extremism online by eliminating the channel for Right Wing Watch.

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Social media companies profited over $1 billion from anti-vaxxer content: report

On Wednesday, writing for Coda, Isobel Cockerell reported that a new study suggests social media platforms make as much as $1.1 billion per year off the disinformation spread by anti-vaccine groups.

"Anti-vaccine content creates a vast amount of engagement for leading technology platforms, including Facebook and Instagram, with an estimated total social media audience of 62 million people. The arrangement works both ways, with the anti-vax industry earning up to $36 million a year," said the report. "The Center for Digital Hate, based in Washington D.C., has called on social media companies to deplatform leading anti-vaxxers, who are responsible for the majority of vaccine misinformation generated online. The Center's CEO, Imran Ahmed, said that the $36 million estimate was conservative and that their real profits could be much higher."

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Did Donald Trump finally kill his blog?

President Donald Trump's blog appears to have been shifted away from The Desk of Donald Trump back to news releases. RawStory contacted the Trump office asking if it was an error or if the website was changing things around but hasn't heard back.

The blog crashed on Saturday after he posted an unverified conspiracy theory about the false Arizona "audit." The piece claimed there were "broken seals on boxes, ballots missing, and worse." The site went down, leaving only a message saying, "something has gone wrong and this URL cannot be processed at this time."

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Here's how a Facebook decision unbanning Trump could freeze the 2024 'wannabe' presidential field for him

This week, an independent Facebook oversight board is set to rule whether President Donald Trump will be allowed back onto the social network, after having been banned from it months previously for his role in promoting the violent attack on the U.S. Capitol.

According to POLITICO, if the board moves to reverse the ban, it could have far-reaching implications for politics in the coming years — not least of which is Trump's viability as a candidate in the 2024 election, and the viability of anyone else who might want to run.

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MSNBC host hilariously mocks Trump for starting 1995-style LiveJournal as his new 'social media platform'

In a hilarious moment on MSNBC Tuesday evening, host Ari Melber ridiculed President Donald Trump's new "social media platform," that he said is nothing more than a blog from the 1990s.

"Donald Trump, after talking about creating a social media platform, instead of doing that or starting an app or a tech company, instead he's launched a blog," said Melber with a smirk. "It is a section of his website that operates like a WordPress blog. And so, I'm not here to make Donald Trump look ridiculous. Today he's done that all by himself. They didn't need to pretend or lie that they were going to create an app or a tech platform. If they put millions into it, that would have been an interesting thing. What does it tell you that he is going straight BlogSpot, straight LiveJournal, straight back to '95, baby."

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Will Donald Trump's new social media platform follow the infamous rule he tried to eliminate for Twitter and Facebook?

It was revealed this week that President Donald Trump and his allies are moving forward with a social media site where he has the freedom to say what he wants. While the open site Parler would gladly accept his participation, Trump appears to want to invest in his own option.

Large GOP donors see it as a way to own "big tech" after so many on the right have been banned from their sites, said a CNBC report.

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Small QAnon Facebook groups are responsible for pushing massive anti-vaccine lies

Many Americans are scared to take the COVID-19 vaccine after QAnon Facebook groups have pushed false information about the shot.

According to the Washington Post, Facebook is doing a massive study about anti-vaccine users, documents show.

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Biden tries to find different solutions to Russia and China hacks during Trump administration

President Joe Biden is bringing together government agencies to come up with a different approach to foreign hacking after former President Donald Trump's government was hacked by Russia and China hacked Microsoft.

According to the New York Times, the hacks "exploited the same gaping vulnerability in the existing system: They were launched from inside the United States — on servers run by Amazon, GoDaddy and smaller domestic providers — putting them out of reach of the early warning system run by the National Security Agency."

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Here's the major lesson from the massive Russian SolarWinds hack

In the wake of the massive hack on U.S. government agencies and private companies allegedly carried out by Russia, the Department of Homeland Security's Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency released a statement saying it "has determined that this threat poses a grave risk to the Federal Government and state, local, tribal, and territorial governments as well as critical infrastructure entities and other private sector organizations."

According to Wired, all the attacks appear to stem from one initial break-in of the IT infrastructure and network-management firm SolarWinds.

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