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Jack Ma asks Zuckerberg to ‘fix’ Facebook

Globalisation has not been inclusive enough in the past decades, but there are ways to fix it, Ma said

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Facebook one of the most popular apps in US. Pixabay
Facebook needs to fix itself. Pixabay
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Jack Ma, founder and chairman of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group, has asked Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to “fix” the social networking giant that is mired in data breach controversy. Attending the Boao Forum for Asia annual conference, which runs from April 8 to 11, Ma told delegates that Zuckerberg should “really take it seriously”.

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Facebook was accused of leaking data to Cambridge Analytica earlier this year.

“It is the time to fix it. It is the time for the CEO to really take it seriously. I think the problems will be solved,” Ma said. Zuckerberg told Congress in written testimony on Monday that he was “responsible for” not preventing the social media platform from being used for harm, including fake news, foreign interference in elections and hate speech.

“We didn’t take a broad enough view of our responsibility and that was a big mistake,” Xinhua news agency quoted Zuckerburg as saying in a prepared testimony released by the US House Energy and Commerce Committee.

“It was my mistake, and I’m sorry. I started Facebook, I run it and I’m responsible for what happens here,” he said in the remarks he is expected to deliver in a hearing on Wednesday.

His apology came after the social media giant found itself embroiled in a widening scandal that a British data firm called Cambridge Analytica had improperly gathered detailed Facebook information on 87 million users, up from a previous estimate of more than 50 million.

Also Read: Facebook junks project to collect patients’ health data: Report

On US-China trade war, Ma said it was normal for the world’s two biggest economies to have problems with trade, but tackling them with a trade war is just like treating a flu with chemotherapies.

“You are not solving the problem of the cold, you are destroying the whole body, the whole system,” Ma made the comment while attending a dinner with International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde. Ma said that trade is about mutual respect and that nobody can stop globalisation.

“Trade is about rules and negotiations. If trade stops, war starts,” he said. Speaking of the US-China trade deficit, Ma dismissed the issue as a problem, citing economic growth and a low jobless rate in the US as well as huge profit made by US firms in the bilateral trade.

“Today as a businessman, I don’t feel that trade deficit is a problem,” he said. For her part, Lagarde also warned of the risk of temptation for inward policies, protectionism and closing off to the outside world.

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The social media app is in news for all the wrong reasons lately. VOA

She suggested reducing trade barriers in the service industry where there is “a big, big upside” in promoting openness. The executive also cautioned challenges to the global economy, including corporate debt and demographic change, saying that “the sun is shining, but we have to look at the cloud arising”.

Globalisation has not been inclusive enough in the past decades, but there are ways to fix it, Ma said. He also said the world is facing a lot of challenges from poverty, environment and technology, noting that innovation is the only way to solve these challenges and problems. IANS

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Facebook Introduces New Tools to Protect Elections Globally

In April, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg testified in front of the US Senate, saying they were too slow to spot and respond to Russian interference

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Facebook expands security tools to protect elections globally. Pixabay

In order to further secure candidates and campaign staff vulnerable to hackers and nation-state actors during the elections, Facebook has introduced additional tools to protect political campaigns in the US and around the world.

The social media giant has launched a pilot programme to expand its existing protections for users associated with US political campaigns ahead of the 2018 mid-term elections.

“Candidates for federal or statewide office, as well as staff members and representatives from federal and state political party committees, can add additional security protections to their Pages and accounts,” Nathaniel Gleicher, Head of Cybersecurity Policy at Facebook, wrote in a blog post late on Monday.

“We’ll help officials adopt our strongest account security protections, like two-factor authentication, and monitor for potential hacking threats,” Gleicher added.

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Facebook App on a smartphone device. (VOA)

Over the past year, the company has invested in new technology and more people to stay ahead of bad actors who are determined to use Facebook to disrupt elections.

“This pilot programme is an addition to our existing security tools and procedures, and we will apply what we learn to other elections in the US and around the world,” said Facebook.

“As we detect abuse, we will continue to share relevant information with law enforcement and other companies so we can maximise our effectiveness,” it added.

According to a report in Download, a working paper released last week revealed a significant drop-off in the engagements 570 fake news sites received on Facebook since the 2016 US presidential elections.

“At its peak, there were 200 million monthly engagements with the sites. As of July 2018, that’s dropped to 70 million,” the report added.

Facebook
Facebook, social media. Pixabay

In April, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg testified in front of the US Senate, saying they were too slow to spot and respond to Russian interference.

“Our sophistication in handling these threats is growing and improving quickly. We now have about 15,000 people working on security and content review. We’ll have more than 20,000 by the end of this year,” he told the lawmakers.

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The Facebook CEO apologised for what happened and took responsibility for everything. He also said that there is an online propaganda “arms race” with Russia and it was important to make sure no one interferes in any more elections, including in India.

“The most important thing I care about right now is making sure no one interferes in the various 2018 elections around the world,” he testified before a 44-Senator panel. (IANS)