Tag Archives: Messenger

WhatsApp's new advert highlights why it's still better than Messenger

WhatsApp has launched a new campaign designed to highlight one of its best features – its default, always-on end-to-end encryption. The new global marketing push comes months after a widespread backlash against the chat app, triggered by its latest privacy policy, which many interrupted as a way for parent company Facebook to siphon more details on WhatsApp users to sell to advertisers across its platforms. 

WhatsApp had threatened users who didn’t sign-up to the new small-print with losing access to core features, including the ability to reply to incoming text messages and calls. Eventually, the Facebook-owned app warned users that accounts would be deleted. However, following a mass exodus of users (so many left at one time that rival encrypted chat app Signal crashed due to the unprecedented demand of new users setting up accounts) WhatsApp decided to water down its threats.

As it stands, those who refuse to agree to the latest terms and conditions will not have their account deleted, or lose core functionality anytime soon. Thankfully, the new privacy policy doesn’t quite grant access to Facebook as many had feared either. While it does allow some details of a conversation to be seen by Facebook, these are limited to conversations with business accounts, which are entirely optional. Many companies are now using WhatsApp to offer customer care support via text messages – as it is an application most customers are familiar with and already have installed on their devices.

Some details of these chats will be available to Facebook, although, this doesn’t apply to users in the UK or mainland Europe, thanks to legislation passed by the European Union pre-Brexit that limits this kind of inter-operability for firms like Facebook.

In an attempt to reassure users following the months of uncertainty and bitterness, WhatsApp says its new campaign is designed to reiterate its “commitment to privacy”.

That’s something that WhatsApp still has over many rivals – not least Facebook’s own Messenger service, which offers end-to-end encryption, but only when enabled for each conversation. If you forget to switch on the setting, dubbed Secret Conversations, any messages, stickers, or videos sent within the chat window could be intercepted by someone else on your Wi-Fi network. It also means the contents of the message are visible to Facebook.

The encrypted Secret Conversations mode doesn’t support group chats, voice or video calls, or GIFs, either.

By default, WhatsApp will encrypt everything sent within the app – blocking its own employees, your internet service provider, and any bad actors who manage to intercept your conversations from deciphering what is being sent. WhatsApp boss Will Cathcart has said the new campaign was created in part due to the recent privacy policy backlash, however, he also claimed the new marketing campaign was a chance for the company to make its case for using encryption everywhere.

In the first film, we see a couple on a double date sharing personal messages that help bring them closer together. In the second film, we see what happens when someone uses WhatsApp to privately land their dream job. These films are supported by a broad campaign online and out-of-home that show people that the messages they send to loved ones cannot be read by WhatsApp or its parent company, Facebook.

Over the course of the campaign, WhatsApp will highlight new privacy innovations like disappearing mode, which gives people choice over how long messages remain in their chats. Recently WhatsApp confirmed that it plans to expand the options for disappearing messages – which were first launched on WhatsApp last year – later this summer. These new privacy features are an important part of WhatsApp’s goal of making chats on WhatsApp feel as close to in-person conversations as possible.

The three-phase campaign will run in the UK and Germany from June 14, 2021. The campaign will run online, across radio and broadcast and digital outdoor.

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Tech Feed

Facebook Messenger DOWN again! Thousands hit by another Facebook outage

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Tech Feed

SATURDAY APRIL 24 UPDATE: After a major outage last week, the gremlins are back for Messenger with the service down again this Saturday night. Users are complaining that they can’t access the Facebook-owned service with thousands of reports flooding in.

ORIGINAL STORY: If you’re trying and failing to send messages via Messenger then you are not alone. The Facebook-owned service is suffering from a strange outage this morning with some users complaining that the chat app is down and not working.

The tech gremlins appear to have begun at around 9:30am this morning with reports still flooding in that messages and chats aren’t sending.

Down Detector, which monitors outages across the globe, is showing a huge spike in complaints with the issues growing by the second. At the time of writing some 700 reports per minute were being posted that Messenger is down.

It’s currently unclear what is causing the bug or how many people are affected but social media is now full of Messenger fans confirming they can’t use the app.

Speaking on Twitter, one Messenger fan said: “Lol is messenger down or our internet is just being slow and laggy?”

Whilst another added: “My messenger is breaking down.”

Not all users appear to have been hit by the bug and Facebook’s status page shows all things are running are normally so it’s unclear why some Messenger fans are facing troubles sending chats.

Facebook usually fixes outages pretty quickly so expect a resolution soon.


If you use Facebook and Messenger your passwords could be in danger

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Tech Feed

This hyperlink link directs to a bogus Facebook Messenger login page designed to steal usernames and passwords.

The threat was highlighted by the Singapore-based cyber security firm Group-IB.

In a blog post online the analysts said: “Group-IB’s DRP analysts have found scam ads targeted at users in at least 84 countries worldwide, including Canada, the United States, France, Germany, Italy, Singapore, Malaysia, and South Africa.

“Users who fell victim to this scheme risk leaking their personal data and have their account hijacked.

“Scammers, in turn, are likely to use the compromised account to either blackmail the victim, pushing them to pay a ransom to have access to their account restored, or further scale up the scheme using the Facebook profile to distribute scam ads.”

Express.co.uk has contacted Facebook for comment about this latest security threat.