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Facebook to Now Allow Users to See all Active Ads on Pages and Flag Suspicious Ones

Facebook said it will also soon launch its political ads labeling and archive in Brazil, ahead of October's general election

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Facebook
Facebook releases Messenger redesign on Android, iOS. Pixabay

After coming under the scanner for alleged Russian meddling in 2016 US Presidential election through Facebook, the social networking giant has now decided to allow users to see the active ads a Page is running and flag suspicious ones.

“The hope of the announcement today is that it will hold us accountable, it will hold advertisers accountable — but it will also give people a lot more ability to find things that maybe shouldn’t be up. Or find things that might be misleading so that we can take actions,” Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg said on Thursday.

“Our ultimate goal is very simple: we want to reduce bad ads, we want to make sure that people understand what they’re seeing, who paid for it, and the fullness of what other people might see,” Sandberg said while addressing the media at Facebook’s Menlo Park headquarters in California.

Representational image.
Representational image. Pixabay

As part of the new transparency initiatives, Facebook said users will be able to see the ads a Page is running across Facebook, Instagram, Messenger and its partner network, even if those ads are not targeted at them.

The Pages will now have an “Info and Ads” section which will have information about the ads and allow users to flag anything suspicious by clicking on “Report Ad.”

Also Read: Facebook Still Evasive Over Cambridge Analytica And Fake News: UK Lawmakers

“You can also learn more about Pages, even if they don’t advertise. For example, you can see any recent name changes and the date the Page was created. We’ll be adding more Page information in the coming weeks,” Rob Leathern, Facebook’s Director of Product Management and the company’s Product Marketing Director Emma Rodgers said in a statement.

Facebook said it will also soon launch its political ads labeling and archive in Brazil, ahead of October’s general election.

Facebook launched this initiative in the US in May. (IANS)

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Social Networking Giant Facebook Stored Users’ Passwords in ‘Readable’ Form

Facebook Lite is a version of Facebook, predominantly used by people in regions with lower connectivity

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Facebook, data,photos
A television photographer shoots the sign outside of Facebook headquarters in Menlo Park, Calif. VOA

Facebook on Thursday said it has fixed a security issue wherein millions of its users’ passwords were stored in plain text and “readable” format for years and according to reports, were searchable by thousands of its employees.

The report by KrebsOnSecurity claimed on Thursday around 200-600 million Facebook users may have had their account passwords stored in plain text and searchable by over 20,000 Facebook employees.

In a blog post later, Facebook said as part of a routine security review in January, it found that some user passwords were being stored in a readable format within our internal data storage systems.

“This caught our attention because our login systems are designed to mask passwords using techniques that make them unreadable.

“We have fixed these issues and as a precaution will be notifying everyone whose passwords we found stored this way,” wrote Pedro Canahuati, VP Engineering, Security and Privacy at Facebook.

The company, however, said these passwords were never visible to anyone outside of Facebook.

Facebook, data, photos, vietnam
A smartphone user displays a Facebook newsfeed .VOA

“We have found no evidence to date that anyone internally abused or improperly accessed them. We estimate that we will notify this to hundreds of millions of Facebook Lite users, tens of millions of other Facebook users, and tens of thousands of Instagram users.

Facebook Lite is a version of Facebook, predominantly used by people in regions with lower connectivity.

“Out of an abundance of caution, we are telling people so that they can change passwords if they choose,” Facebook tweeted.

Also Read- EU Fines Google $1.7 bn for Unfair Online Ad Rules

Earlier this month, Facebook came under scrutiny for using phone numbers provided for security reasons — like two-factor authentication (2FA) — for things like advertising and making users searchable by their phone numbers across its different platforms.

“Consider enabling a security key or two-factor authentication to protect your Facebook account using codes from a third party authentication app. When you log in with your password, we will ask for a security code or to tap your security key to verify that it is you,” Facebook advised. (IANS)