Friday, May 13, 2011

Facebook Secretly hired a PR organisation to asperse Google

The famous Social Networking site Facebook caught secretly hiring top Public Relations Organisation to implant negative stories about the Internet Search Gaint Google Inc.

PR firm Burson-Marsteller, got captured in a scandal for running a secret anti-Google asperse campaign on behalf of Social Networking site Facebook,

The Evidence – that damage relations between the two giants, that have already bitter rivals – came to light in leaked emails late on wenesday. Facebook later admitted that it had hired Burson-Marsteller to the Daily Beast.

Burson gave a statement yesterday faulting the Facebook. The statement said Facebook insisted on being kept anonymous, and that Burson should not have gone along with that request.

Paul Cordasco, a spokesman for Burson-Marsteller, told the Guardian yesterday that the assignment was not at all standard operating procedure and was against the company's policies.

Google refused to comment.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Symantec says Facebook apps leak personal data

Security company Symantec claims Facebook application coding error may allow third parties to access users' private details...

Facebook applications may leak users' private data to third parties, including advertisers, according to researchers at security giant Symantec.

The social network site allows third party applications, the most popular of which are games, to run inside an iFrame, a partition within a web page that allows it to run code from an external site.

Symantec claims that due to a coding error, Facebook's iFrame applications leak 'access tokens' to third parties such as advertisers or web analytics providers, granting them permission to access users' photos, messages and personal data.

"We estimate that as of April 2011, close to 100,000 applications were enabling this leakage," wrote Symantec research Nishant Doshi in a company blog post "We estimate that over the years, hundreds of thousands of applications may have inadvertently leaked millions of access tokens to third parties."

The company believes that those parties may not have realised that they could access that data.

Symantec has informed the social networking giant of the issue, it says. "Facebook notified us of changes on their end to prevent these tokens from getting leaked." It recommends that Facebook users change their passwords.

It is not the first time Facebook has been accused of inadvertantly leaking users' private data. In October last year, two Facebook users sued the company, alleging that the 'referrer headers' that tell advertisers when a user has clicked on an ad contain private data about that user's browsing history.

Facebook denied the charges, arguing that there had been no material damage as a result of the practice. A similar suit has since been launched against LinkedIn, the professional social network popular in the IT industry.

Read more at :

Google Chrome OS laptop rentals for $20 a month

Google is set to unveil a Chrome laptop “student package” tomorrow at its I/O developer conference for $20 a month, an unnamed senior Google executive tells Forbes.

If true, the move has the potential to completely reshape the way consumers adopt computers, and it will also serve as a not-so-subtle Trojan horse for Google’s online offerings.

The $20 monthly fee will cover both hardware and online services for the laptops, which run Google’s web-centric Chrome OS software, the executive said. It will likely serve as a precursor to an enterprise Chrome laptop offering, wherein businesses pay a slight premium over their $50 annual fee for Google Apps (the company’s web-based Microsoft Office competitor suite).

The Chrome laptops will likely feature the same mobile broadband capabilities as the CR-48. That computer shipped with built-in 3G access and included 100 megabytes of monthly internet free for two years. You could also opt for daily unlimited internet for $10, 1 gigabyte of mobile internet for $20 a month, 3 GB for $35 a month, and 5 GB for $50 a month.

Aiming the Chrome laptop subscriptions at students seems like a good choice at first glance. After all, paying $20 a month for a computer beats spending $600 or more for a full-fledged laptop. But most students would have a hard time relying solely on the Chrome laptops, since they won’t have access to key Windows and Mac software that some courses may require. Like netbooks, the Chrome laptops could serve as secondary machines — assuming they’re light enough.

Google will also need to offer students something far better than its CR-48 laptop, which was heavy and had one of the worst trackpads ever forced upon a computer.

Reports of a Chrome laptop subscription plan go back a few weeks, when Neowin heard pretty much the same information Forbes did today from a “reliable source.” That report also noted that Google will upgrade the Chrome laptop hardware and offer hardware replacements for the life of the subscription