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Waze joins Facebook and Google in making sure AMBER Alerts reach as many people as possible

It’s important for AMBER Alerts to reach as many people as possible. A study found that 74 percent of children who die after being abducted are killed within three hours. Looking out for these children could mean the difference between finding them alive or dead. That’s what makes things like Waze’s announcement that it will display AMBER Alerts [...]

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Facebook now allows its users, not a drop-down menu, to define their genders

Facebook might not allow drag queens or Native Americans to use their real names on its service, but it looks like the company isn’t totally insensitive to its users’ various cultures. The company revealed yesterday that it will no longer define genders via the drop-down list that appeared whenever someone made or updated their Facebook profile [...]

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SF’s real income inequality issue isn’t hipsters priced out of homes — It’s the homeless

As the tech boom continues to bring more and more attention to San Francisco’s socioeconomic issues, a well-trod narrative has emerged: Tech companies have brought more and more upper-middle class workers to the Bay Area where housing — affordable or otherwise — has been limited by geographic and legislative pressures. Inevitably, already-high housing prices go up, while [...]

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Facebook offers help to at-risk users without placing them under a microscope

Facebook has announced new features to help people at risk for self-harm or suicide. The features allow Facebook users to tell the service when someone appears to be at risk for harming themselves. Facebook notifies the person in question that someone is worried about them, asks if they want to connect with a helpline or [...]

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Do you know what your stuff’s worth? Trov raises $6.5M to reinvent insurance for the mobile generation

Millennials, the largest generation since the Baby Boomers (their parents), have almost no relationship with the insurance industry. This is in part due to low rates of home ownership –and a general malaise toward renter’s insurance — but also due to the fact that the insurance industry has yet to deliver a solution that speaks [...]

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Researchers say Superfish is just the beginning of consumers’ woes

Superfish, the company that put an unknown number of Lenovo customers at risk with its advertisement injection software, isn’t the only one undermining Web security for profit. Researchers have found at least a dozen other products — including another tool that inserts ads into Web pages and parental control software — that subvert the HTTPS security [...]

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Report claims Facebook runs afoul of Belgian privacy laws

Facebook’s recently updated terms of service violate European laws governing the use of consumer data, according to a report commissioned by the Belgian privacy commission, even though concerns about the company’s data practices have been raised since at least 2013. The report criticizes many of Facebook’s practices, from the use of consumer data to inform third-party advertisements [...]

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Congressmen plan to conflate extremist tweeters and child pornography to cow Twitter

France isn’t the only nation that wants Facebook, Twitter, and other social media sites to be more strict about removing content published by extremist organizations. Yahoo News reports that the United States government plans to pressure Twitter to “act more aggressively against terrorists” as part of its fight against the brutal militant group Islamic State. According to [...]

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Facebook targets Native Americans with controversial real-name policy

Facebook’s real-name policy is once again embroiling the company in controversy. This time it’s because the service has been telling Native Americans that their names run afoul of the policy and locking their accounts until they provide three forms of identification. The names are often flagged because they combine several ambiguous nouns, like Lone Hill or [...]

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Researchers find even more problems with WhatsApp

WhatsApp’s problems continue to mount. Naked Security reports that a new tool allows anyone to see if a WhatsApp user is online regardless of whether they’re friends or if the person doing the snooping even uses WhatsApp. The freely available utility has been appropriately dubbed the WhatsApp Spy Public tool. Using the tool also allows someone to view a [...]

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Social sites have found a new monetization strategy and it leaves indie creators out in the cold

We’ve officially entered the third wave of social media and it’s not good news for independent creators. The first wave took place in those wild, wooly days when social media was still, well, fun. That’s because nobody — not users, brands, nor the platforms themselves — was sure anyone could ever make an dime on social networks. Yes, you could build [...]

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