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Facebook is again targeting malware, this time by adding a new notification that will show up on infected users’ computers. If the notification shows up, one of two software options will be displayed depending on the best for the type of issue the user is having.

The notifications — featured below — advise the user that they can remove the detected malware using the recommended product. Those who have their own software or don’t want to run it at the moment, the option exists to skip the installation.

If the user chooses to install the software, it will run in the background while they continue to use the service, and then will uninstall itself after running. If the user doesn’t install the software and the malware is still detected, the notification will show back up later on.

At the moment, Facebook is offering up recommendations to use HouseCall from Trend Micro or F-Secure, dishing up the recommended product best for the user’s issue. In the future, other anti-virus software options will also be offered.

Facebook launches friend-tracking feature

Posted by Rattana_S On April - 22 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

(CNN) — Your phone always knows where you are. And now, if you want, your Facebook friends will always know where you are, too.

Facebook is introducing a mobile feature called Nearby Friends that taps into that steady stream of location information so friends can track each other in real time.

The idea is to make it easy for people to meet up in real life, so they can have conversations in person instead of comment threads, temporarily replacing Likes and LOLs with eye contact and actual laughter. A live meet-up is also an excellent opportunity to grab a selfie with your pal and upload it to the Facebook owned Instagram.

In a refreshing change, the new Nearby Friends feature is not turned on by default.

Friends will not be able to see where you are unless you decide live-tracking is something you want in your life and visit Facebook’s settings to turn it on. Making a potentially invasive new feature opt-in suggests Facebook has perhaps learned from some of its past mistakes and privacy problems.

You can choose to share your general location with all your Facebook friends, close friends or a customized list of people you feel most comfortable with. Further minimizing the potential stalking factor, your location is only shared with other people who are also using the feature and who have chosen to share their location with you.

When turned on, Nearby Friends shows a list of approved Facebook friends who also use the feature and shows their approximate location. A push notification can tell you how many of your friends are nearby. Open the app to see a list of pals, the neighborhood or city where they are, how many miles away that is from your current location, and a time stamp of when they where there.

There is an option to share your exact location with specific friends, which can be handy for coordinating large groups at concerts or finding someone in a crowded area. Your friends will see a little image of your face on a map for a set period of time.

Nearby Friends will be available on Facebook’s iOS and Android apps, but will only work for select locations at first.

Facebook, Instagram and many other apps already include features that let people “check-in” to locations, but those location features are different because you decide if and when to share each specific location. You might check into a Starbucks downtown, but never into your home or other spot you’d rather keep private. Nearby Friends is continuously gathering details about where you are in the background instead of waiting for a manual check-in.

This is not the first time an app has used location information to physically connect friends. Similar apps such as Highlight, which got a flurry of attention in 2012, mapped out the locations of nearby strangers. Facebook also purchased a startup in 2012 called Glancee that also connected strangers. That technology evolved into this new, more private feature.

If you turn on the Nearby Friends feature, Facebook starts collecting data on your exact location and keeps details on where you’ve been in the past, not just places where you’ve used its app to check in. It also collects location information even when the Facebook app is closed.

But you can turn off this location history in the Facebook app’s settings. It’s possible to delete individual locations from a history, or clear the whole thing and start from scratch.

Last month’s news that Facebook bought startup Oculus VR for $2 billion spurred many loud and often furious reactions from gamers and especially those who participated in the project’s initial Kickstarter. If you’re among those wondering what’s next for Oculus and haven’t been convinced by the written words of founder Palmer Luckey and others (including John Carmack and Sony’s Shuhei Yoshida), perhaps hearing them will make a difference. Reviewed.com tracked down Luckey at the PAX East event today and got him on camera talking about Oculus and Facebook. As he’s expressed before, Luckey says the plan is to “promote the long-term adoption of virtual reality, not short-term financial returns.” In his words “the games industry is the only industry that’s really well equipped to build interactive immersive 3D worlds,” so don’t expect the focus of Oculus to suddenly change now that it’s in cahoots with Zuckerberg and company. So, after a couple of weeks to think about it — and the addition of notable former Valve / iD software employee Mike Abrash to the Oculus team — how do you feel about the acquisition now?

(Iribe/Luckey Photo:Ana Venegas/The Orange County Register/ZUMAPRESS.com)

Facebook to require separate mobile app for messages

Posted by Rattana_S On April - 10 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

(Reuters) – Facebook Inc will no longer let users send and receive private messages within its main smartphone app, and will require that users install a separate messaging app, the Internet company said on Wednesday.

Facebook began notifying users in France, England and several other European countries on Wednesday that beginning in a couple of weeks they will need to install the company’s standalone Messenger app in order to send and receive messages.

Facebook plans to eventually require that users in all countries install the Messenger app, spokesman Derick Mains said, though he could not provide a specific timeframe for the change.

The move is intended to ensure that users have a consistent and high-quality experience, a Facebook spokesman told Reuters. The free, standalone Messenger app is faster than the messaging service that’s currently built into Facebook’s primary mobile app. Facebook users can also access more features in the Messenger app, such as the ability to make voice phone calls.

“We have built a fast and reliable messaging experience through Messenger and now it makes sense for us to focus all our energy and resources on that experience,” the company said in a statement.

Facebook faces increasing competition from a new crop of fast-growing mobile messaging apps, such as Snapchat and Line. It stunned observers by announcing plans in February to buy the popular WhatsApp messaging app for $19 billion.

Forcing users to install a separate messaging app on their phones could help boost the popularity of Facebook Messenger, but could also cause a backlash if consumers view Facebook’s move as heavy-handed. A post on the technology blog Mashable on Wednesday was titled “11 Reasons why Pulling Messenger From Facebook Mobile is a Terrible Idea,” and many people took to Twitter to post critical comments about the change.

Facebook, the world’s No.1 social networking service with 1.2 billion users, has increasingly moved to develop a catalog of standalone apps to complement its main app. In January, Facebook launched Paper, a photo-heavy news-reading app that has earned positive reviews.

Facebook also acquired photo-sharing app Instagram in 2012 and announced plans to buy WhatsApp, which has more than 450 million users. News of the change in Facebook’s messaging service was first reported by the technology blog TechCrunch on Wednesday.

(Reporting by Alexei Oreskovic; Editing by Bernard Orr)

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