Friday March 22, 2019
Home Lead Story Facebook &#82...

Facebook ‘Tricks’ Kids, Parents into Spending Money in Free Games

And parents also did not know their children could use their credit card without re-entering a password or some other form of verification, according to the Reveal

0
//
Facebook, data,photos
A television photographer shoots the sign outside of Facebook headquarters in Menlo Park, Calif. VOA

Facebook engaged in practices that “tricked” children and their parents into spending money in free-to-play games, the media has reported.

According to records that are part of a class-action lawsuit, and include internal Facebook memos, secret strategies and employee emails, the social media giant engaged in what was internally dubbed “friendly fraud” in order to maximise its revenues.

“And the company often denied attempts by parents to recover hundreds or even thousands of dollars until credit card companies ‘clawed back’ the money from Facebook,” the VentureBeat reported late on Saturday.

The story detailed the case of one 12-year-old boy who had spent nearly $1,000 in the game Ninja Saga. That case led to a lawsuit in 2012, the report added.

Facebook, Fake News
Facebook ‘tricked’ kids, parents to spend money on ‘free’ games: Report. VOA

The time span for the abuses covered 2010 to 2014, but the documents related to these cases were not released until now.

An internal Facebook survey of users found that many parents did not even realise that the social networking giant was storing their credit card information.

Also Read- Fish Oil Supplements May Not Improve Asthma Symptoms, Says Study

And parents also did not know their children could use their credit card without re-entering a password or some other form of verification, according to the Reveal. (IANS)

Next Story

Experts Urging Users to Change their Facebook Passwords and Turn on Two-Factor Authentication

Facebook in a blog post on Thursday said that it had fixed the issue and will be notifying everyone whose passwords it found stored this way

0
Facebook
Facebook in a blog post on Thursday said that it had fixed the issue and will be notifying everyone whose passwords it found stored this way. Pixabay

After a report revealed around 200-600 million Facebook users may have had their account passwords stored in plain text and searchable by over 20,000 Facebook employees, cybersecurity experts are urging users to change their passwords and turn on the two-factor authentication (2FA).

So far the inquiry has uncovered archives with plain text user passwords dating back to 2012, according to the report published this week by KrebsOnSecurity, a blog run by journalist Brian Krebs.

Facebook in a blog post on Thursday said that it had fixed the issue and will be notifying everyone whose passwords it found stored this way.

“It’s perfectly possible that no passwords at all fell into the hands of any crooks as a result of this. But if any passwords did get into the wrong hands then you can expect them to be abused,” said Paul Ducklin, Senior Technologist at global cybersecurity firm Sophos.

facebook
Facebook said it had found no evidence to date that anyone internally abused or improperly accessed the passwords. Pixabay

“Hashed passwords still need to be cracked before they can be used; plaintext passwords are the real deal without any further hacking or cracking needed,” Ducklin added.

Facebook said it had found no evidence to date that anyone internally abused or improperly accessed the passwords.

“While the details of the incident are still emerging, this is likely an accidental programming error that led to the logging of plain text credentials. That said, this should never have happened and Facebook needs to ensure that no user credentials or data were compromised as a result of this error,” said John Shier, Senior Security Advisor at Sophos.

“This is also another reminder for people who are still reusing passwords or using weak passwords to change their Facebook password to something strong and unique and to turn on two-factor authentication (2FA),” Shier said. Turning on 2FA would mean that a password alone is not enough for crooks to raid your account, Ducklin added.

facebook
Turning on 2FA would mean that a password alone is not enough for crooks to raid your account, Ducklin added. Pixabay

Facebook also asked people to change their passwords “out of an abundance of caution”.

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.

ALSO READ: New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern Receives Death Threats on Social Media

“Another security measure users can implement to strengthen their digital security postures is to use different passwords for different online accounts. Don’t use your Facebook password for any other login, particularly for personal/professional email accounts or online banking,” said Sanjay Katkar, Joint Managing Director and Chief Technology Officer, Quick Heal Technologies Limited.

“It is also a good practice to log out whenever not using Facebook, even on mobile devices,” Katkar added. (IANS)