QR Codes are New Security Threat
It was only a matter of time. The same QR codes that have grown in popularity around the world, more so in Asia and Europe than in the US, are now a security threat. An incident took place in Russia where unsuspecting people thought they were downloading an app called Jimm by scanning a QR Code. What they actually got was malware that sent SMS codes to a special premium rate number that charged for each message. These four to five-digit numbers are similar to 900 numbers, charging for each text sent to them. These are much more difficult to set up in the US, but this process may become much easier in the near future.
I file this under “it was only a matter of time,” because a QR code is really just a cooler and more portable version of a link. We all know we shouldn’t click random unknown links, but we still do. This is why people still get viruses and malware. Technology isn’t opening any new security holes, but it’s the users of the technology that make themselves vulnerable. Just as with any other security threat, make sure you trust the source of a link or QR code and make sure you know where it’s supposed to go. Whenever you scan a QR Code, you have that interim screen that tells you what it’s about to do. Think hard for a moment before you proceed.
Twitter Boasts 250 Million Tweets per Day
Twitter CEO Dick Costolo dropped some big numbers at a speaker dinner at the Web 2.0 Summit in San Francisco. The recent iOS 5 Twitter integration has notably increased signups three-fold. They’ve also gone from having 30% of their 100 million users active every day in January 2011 to over 50% active daily users today. With 250 million tweets per day, Costolo says “We’ve got to figure out how to capture the volume at the same time as separating the signal from the noise.”
Facebook Power Users Defecting To Google+?
Sean Parker, founder of Napster, well-known share-holder at Facebook and portrayed by Justin Timberlake in The Social Network, believes that privacy is not Facebook’s biggest problem. At the Web 2.0 Summit in SF, Parker says that “The strategic threat to Facebook is that power users have gone to Twitter or to Google+.” As a social media power user who is turned off by Facebook’s controls or lack thereof, Parker’s words ring true.
“I don’t think privacy is an issue. That may be controversial but I don’t think that’s Facebook’s biggest problem. I think Facebook’s biggest problem is the glut of information that Facebook’s power users are overwhelmed with… [Facebook] needs to address the need of power users to have more controls.”
Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich Official
Most Android fans have been waiting with baited breath for the new Galaxy Nexus phone to come out and it became official just a few days ago. I watched the live presentation on YouTube and, I must say, the device is very impressive. It’s a slender, curved, device with a huge screen and a camera with Zero Shutter Lag. What’s more impressive to me, though, is Android 4.0. It has just about every feature Android users have been wanting and then some. The UI has been enhanced significantly, there is a fancy visualizer to track and alert you on your data usage, the entire experience is more centered around people and profile photos. You can even unlock your phone with your face.