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Facebook for holidays

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Facebook has put together this detailed list of making the most of organising and remembering the holidays via its platforms.

The December holidays are around the corner, along with fun, sun, sea, sand and get-togethers with friends and family.

To help keep you organised while you travel to different beaches, Facebook is here with Events, Groups, and Photos, allowing you to connect and share with family and friends near and far.

Below are some great ways that Facebook can help you share summer with the people that matter to you.

Host an event with ease and grace!

  • Facebook Events makes it easy to plan parties ­without the hassle of an email thread. Personalise your event with details, location, even the weather forecast, and control who can see, and share your invitation with customised privacy settings.
  • Still need a plan for New Year’s Eve? Check out popular events nearby ­ join in and invite your friends!
  • Getting things done with the help of your friends people come to Facebook every day to connect and share experiences with friends and family. We share the great places we go and we ask our friends for advice when we need help getting things done. Facebook recently introduced a variety of new features that help you use those connections to discover new things in the world around you, decide what to do or where to go, and connect with local businesses in easier and faster ways, this initial experience has been rolled out in the US for now but over the coming months Facebook will be launching even more new features that will make it easier to get things done.

Bring friends and family together! 

  • Messenger is a great way to connect with friends on the go! You can share your precise location so friends can meet you exactly where you are on the beach or at a nearby restaurant. You can even take and share pictures and make a video call with the built-in camera so everyone knows how great the beach looks. Add stickers to a photo before you send to a friend using Stickered for Messenger.
  • Facebook Groups is your secret weapon for sharing tips with friends, family, neighbors and co-workers. Create groups focused on recipes or décor ideas. Still looking for more beach party ideas? Facebook will suggest groups for you based on your current membership or targeted groups within your area.

Celebrate the sunshine with sharing! 

  • With Facebook Photos, no one misses out on the fun. Use shared photo albums to swap photos of fun all summer long with select family or friends.
  • Want to show off your fam’s annual summer holiday? Facebook Photos allows you to easily share your photo with all your Facebook friends. If you’d prefer a private album, adjust the album’s features to share with select groups.

 

Creative Tools for Summer Fun

Summer is here, so many of us will be sharing our holiday snaps with our Friends on Facebook.

Facebook now offers more options to customise photos because we know people love being creative with their pics.

The features, now available for the majority of iPhone users and testing on Android, allow people to swipe between filters, overlay multiple lines of text in any colour, add their favourite emojis, and choose from a variety of stickers to create fully customised photos.

Tips for Editing Photos

  • To access all the photo editing tools, click the magic wand icon in the lower left hand corner of the photo you’re posting.
    • From there, you’ll see options for adding filters, stickers, or text to your photos, as well as other tools including cropping and tagging.
  • You can add different filters to your photo by tapping on the Filters icon. Different filters can have different effects depending on how your photo was taken, so try them all out and see which one you like best.
    • If you want to quickly add a filter without using any of the other tools, you can swipe left or right right after you select your photo. It’s an easy way to quickly scroll through the filters and see how each one makes your photo look.
    • Filters available include Auto, Vintage, Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter and Snow.
  • You can start making your photos a lot more fun by adding stickers. Try out the Summer Vacation sticker pack to show your friends what you’re up to during the break. Or try on a new look with a crazy hairstyle and glasses from the Undercover pack. You can add stickers to your friends in your next group photo, but be careful, they might get you back next time.
    • Tap the Stickers icon to see the available stickers, and tap on the plus symbol to download new sticker packs, all of which are free.
    • When you’ve added a sticker, you can drag it around the photo, adjust the size by pinching, or rotate it. If you decide not to use the sticker, remove it by dragging it over the trash can icon.
  • You can also add text on top of your photos by clicking on the Text icon. Create a special message for your next Throwback Thursday photo or give your photo a funny title instead of writing a caption.
    • You can change the size, position and color of the text before a photo is posted, placing it anywhere over the picture.

Tell your story on Instagram
With Instagram Stories you can share all the moments of your day, not just the ones you want to keep on your profile. As you share multiple photos and videos, they appear together in a slideshow format: your story.

What’s great is that with Instagram Stories, you don’t have to worry about overposting during the holidays. Instead, you can share as much as you want throughout the day — with as much creativity as you want. You can bring your story to life in new ways with text and drawing tools. The photos and videos will disappear after 24 hours and won’t appear on your profile grid or in feed.

In addition, stories are easy to share with just who you want (and hide from who you want).

 

Security Tips to Help Keep You Safe on Facebook

You might be preparing for a festive season break, but hackers, malware and the other nuisances of the digital age won’t be taking a holiday.

We have compiled some simple tips about keeping your Facebook account safe and secure.

Pick a unique, strong password.

Use combinations of at least 6 letters, numbers and punctuation marks and don’t use this password for any of your other accounts. You can also use a password safe like LastPassKeePass or 1Password to set and remember unique passwords for your account. Learn how to change your password.

Think before you click.

Never click suspicious links, even if they come from a friend or a company you know. This includes links sent on Facebook (for example: in a chat or story) or in emails. If one of your friends clicks a spam link, they could accidentally send you or tag you in spammy posts. If you see something suspicious on Facebook, report it. You also shouldn’t download things (for example: a .exe file) if you aren¹t sure what they are. Learn more about recognising suspicious emails.

Watch out for suspicious Pages and apps/games.

Be suspicious of Pages promoting offers that are too good to be true. If in doubt, check to see if a Page is verified. Also be mindful when you install new apps or games. Sometimes scammers use bad apps and games to gain access to your Facebook account.

·         Don’t accept friend requests from people you don’t know. Sometimes scammers will create fake accounts to friend people. Becoming friends with scammers allows them access to spam your Timeline, tag you in posts and send you malicious messages. Your real friends may also end up being targeted.

·         Never give out your login info (like your email address and password). Sometimes people or pages will promise you something (for example: free poker chips) if you share your login info with them. These types of deals are carried out by cybercriminals and violate the Facebook Statement of Rights and Responsibilities. If you’re ever asked to re-enter your password on Facebook (for example: you’re making changes to your account settings) check to make sure the address of the page still has facebook.com/ in the URL (web address).

·         Log in at www.facebook.com. Sometimes scammers will set up a fake page to look like a Facebook login page, hoping to get you to enter your email address and password. Make sure you check the page’s URL before you enter your login info. When in doubt, you can always type facebook.com into your browser to get back to the real Facebook.

Update your browser. 

The newest versions of internet browsers have built-in security protections. For example, they might be able to warn you if you’re about to go to a suspected phishing site. Facebook supports:

o   Mozilla Firefox

o    Safari

o   Google Chrome

o   Internet Explorer

Run anti-virus software.

To protect yourself from viruses and malware, scan your computer. You can learn more and download

this software for free:

o    For Windows

o    For Mac OS

Stay safe online.

Facebook recently launched its redesigned Facebook Safety Center, which is a free internet safety resources for teenagers, parents and educators. The new Safety Centre walks people through the tools Facebook offers to control their experience on Facebook, as well as numerous tips and resources for safe and secure sharing of information. It works well on mobile devices and includes step-by-step videos on a variety of useful safety topics. Check it out at: www.facebook.com/safety.

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Earth 2050: memory chips for kids, telepathy for adults

An astonishing set of predictions for the next 30 years includes a major challenge to the privacy of our thoughts.

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By 2050, most kids may be fitted with the latest memory boosting implants, and adults will have replaced mobile devices with direct connectivity through brain implants, powered by thought.

These are some of the more dramatic forecasts in Earth 2050, an award-winning, interactive multimedia project that accumulates predictions about social and technological developments for the upcoming 30 years. The aim is to identify global challenges for humanity and possible ways of solving these challenges. The website was launched in 2017 to mark Kaspersky Lab’s 20th birthday. It comprises a rich variety of predictions and future scenarios, covering a wide range of topics.

Recently a number of new contributions have been added to the site. Among them Lord Martin Rees, the UK’s Astronomer Royal, Professor at Cambridge University and former President of the Royal Society; investor and entrepreneur Steven Hoffman, Peter Tatchell, human rights campaigner, along withDmitry Galov, security researcher and Alexey Malanov, malware analyst at Kaspersky Lab.

The new visions for 2050 consider, among other things:

  • The replacement of mobile devices with direct connectivity through brain implants, powered by thought – able to upload skills and knowledge in return – and the impact of this on individual consciousness and privacy of thought.
  • The ability to transform all life at the genetic level through gene editing.
  • The potential impact of mistakes made by advanced machine-learning systems/AI.
  • The demise of current political systems and the rise of ‘citizen governments’, where ordinary people are co-opted to approve legislation.
  • The end of the techno-industrial age as the world runs out of fossil fuels, leading to economic and environmental devastation.
  • The end of industrial-scale meat production, as most people become vegan and meat is cultured from biopsies taken from living, outdoor reared livestock.

The hypothetical prediction for 2050 from Dmitry Galov, security researcher at Kaspersky Lab is as follows: “By 2050, our knowledge of how the brain works, and our ability to enhance or repair it is so advanced that being able to remember everything and learn new things at an outrageous speed has become commonplace. Most kids are fitted with the latest memory boosting implants to support their learning and this makes education easier than it has ever been. 

“Brain damage as a result of head injury is easily repaired; memory loss is no longer a medical condition, and people suffering from mental illnesses, such as depression, are quickly cured.  The technologies that underpin this have existed in some form since the late 2010s. Memory implants are in fact a natural progression from the connected deep brain stimulation implants of 2018.

“But every technology has another side – a dark side. In 2050, the medical, social and economic impact of memory boosting implants are significant, but they are also vulnerable to exploitation and cyber-abuse. New threats that have appeared in the last decade include the mass manipulation of groups through implanted or erased memories of political events or conflicts, and even the creation of ‘human botnets’. 

“These botnets connect people’s brains into a network of agents controlled and operated by cybercriminals, without the knowledge of the victims themselves.  Repurposed cyberthreats from previous decades are targeting the memories of world leaders for cyber-espionage, as well as those of celebrities, ordinary people and businesses with the aim of memory theft, deletion of or ‘locking’ of memories (for example, in return for a ransom).  

“This landscape is only possible because, in the late 2010s when the technologies began to evolve, the potential future security vulnerabilities were not considered a priority, and the various players: healthcare, security, policy makers and more, didn’t come together to understand and address future risks.”

For more information and the full suite of inspirational and thought-provoking predictions, visit Earth 2050.

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How load-shedding is killing our cellphone signals

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Extensive load-shedding, combined with the theft of cell tower backup batteries and copper wire, is placing a massive strain on mobile network providers.

MTN says the majority of MTN’S sites have been equipped with battery backup systems to ensure there is enough power on site to run the system for several hours when local power goes out and the mains go down. 

“With power outages on the rise, these back-up systems become imperative to keeping South Africa connected and MTN has invested heavily in generators and backup batteries to maintain communication for customers, despite the lack of electrical power,” the operator said in a statement today.

However, according to Jacqui O’Sullivan, Executive: Corporate Affairs, at MTN SA, “The high frequency of the cycles of load shedding have meant batteries were unable to fully recharge. They generally have a capacity of six to 12 hours, depending on the site category, and require 12 to 18 hours to recharge.”

An additional challenge is that criminals and criminal syndicates are placing networks across the country at risk. Batteries, which can cost R28 000 per battery and upwards, are sought after on black markets – especially in neighbouring countries. 

“Although MTN has improved security and is making strides in limiting instances of theft and vandalism with the assistance of the police, the increase in power outages has made this issue even more pressing,” says O’Sullivan.

Ernest Paul, General Manager: Network Operations at SA’s leading network provider MTN, says the brazen theft of batteries is an industry-wide problem and will require a broader initiative driven by communities, the private sector, police and prosecutors to bring it to a halt.

“Apart from the cost of replacing the stolen batteries and upgrading the broken infrastructure, communities suffer as the network degrades without the back-up power. This is due to the fact that any coverage gaps need to be filled. The situation is even more dire with the rolling power cuts expected due to Eskom load shedding.”

Loss of services and network quality can range from a 2-5km radius to 15km on some sites and affect 5,000 to 20,000 people. On hub sites, network coverage to entire suburbs and regions can be lost.

Click here to read more about efforts to combat copper theft.

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