Facebook Reveals “Project Titan” – A New Modern Messaging System

During this mornings press event in San Francisco, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg revealed that Project Titan is not “e-mail” as speculated, but an entirely new “modern messaging system”.

Although each Facebook user will be given an @facebook.com e-mail address, the primary focus of the new messaging system is to allow users to communicate in real-time, via IM, SMS, or Facebook, wherever they are.

According to Zuckerberg, 350 million users send an astounding average of 4 billion messages through Facebook daily. Taking this into consideration, along with statements from teenage users that e-mail is too slow, Facebook developers sat down to design a seemless, cross-platform and spam-free messaging system.

Currently in Beta, the system will be rolled out to users over the next few months via an invite-only process.

To view the full press event recording, be sure to visit and click on the Facebook New Messages Announcement video.

As soon as we have access to the new system, we will have screenshots and tutorials made available!



Facebook Breaks Ground On A New Rutherford North Carolina Data Center

Facebook's New Rutherford North Carolina Data Center
North Carolina Gov. Bev Perdue announced yesterday that Facebook will be building their second data center in Rutherford County. The scheduled opening is for March 2012 and it is slated to employ 35-45 full-time and contract workers. The price tag? $450 million dollars…

Already under construction and due to open in 2011, Facebook’s previously announced Oregon data center has been designed with a variety of energy saving technologies. These include an evaporative cooling system, the re-use of its own server heat, a proprietary uninterrupted power supply, and the ability to cool the facility 70% of the year simply by bringing in colder air from the outside.

It was announced that the new North Carolina data center will be utilizing much of the same technology to make the new data center as energy-efficient as possible.

To follow the progress of the new Rutherford North Carolina data center, “Like” the Facebook Page.

With Facebook growing at an astounding rate, the new data center gives them plenty more room to spread their wings even more!


Tempted By Facebook Spam? Take Facebook’s “Stop. Think. Connect.” Security Quiz First!

Facebook’s fight against spam and scams continues with their latest filings of three lawsuits a U.S. federal court in San Jose, California late last month. Facebook is alleging violations of their terms and applicable law by defendants attempting to trick users of Facebook into signing up for mobile subscriptions and then virally sending spam to their friends.

According to , “In three separate complaints, we allege that Steven Richter, Jason Swan, and Max Bounty, Inc. used Facebook to offer enticing, but non-existent products and services. According to our complaints, the defendants, among other things, represented that in order to qualify for certain fake or deceptive offers, people had to spam their friends, sign up for automatic mobile phone subscription services, or provide other information. We claim that by doing this, they violated the U.S. Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, the Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing Act (CAN-SPAM), and other state and federal laws.”

Facebook is seeking compensatory, statutory and punitive damages from each of the three parties named in the lawsuits.

Examples of this type of spam/scam are the countless “Free FarmVille Cash”, “500 Mafia Wars Rewards Points, and “66×66 FarmVille Expansion” fan pages we see almost daily on our walls.

Richter is alleged to have created more than 40 Facebook profiles and over 40 Facebook pages, all designed to lure 388,000 users to various third-party sites. He is estimated to have earned 44 cents for each Facebook user he duped.

Let’s do the math: 388,000 x $0.44 = $170,720.00

Swan allegedly harvested Facebook user data by tricking users into participating in various online quizzes and surveys. You have most likely see a variety of them appear on your news feed; “Take the IQ Challenge”, “Which 7 Deadly Sin Are You” and “Are you Stressed?” He is also accused of encouraging Facebok users to spam each other by luring them to copy and paste a piece of java script code into their browsers. This snippet of code automatically blasts a message to all of the user’s friends.

Max Bounty, one of many CPA (Cost Per Action) affiliate marketing firms, is alleged to be behind the schemes of both Richter and Swan. The lawsuit filed by Facebook is alleging that Max Bounty encouraged their affiliates to set up fake Facebook profiles and pages for the purposes of luring Facebook users.

Facebook holds the record for the two largest judgments in the history of the CAN-SPAM Act. In October 2009, Facebook won a $711 million dollar judgement against spammer Sanford Wallace. In 2008, an $873 million judgment against Adam Guerbuez was a awarded when he was found guilty of sending out more than 4 million pornographic spam messages over Facebook.






In an attempt to encourage Facebook users to be vigilant and learn the skills necessary to protect themselves online, Facebook has teamed up with the National Cyber Security Alliance, the Anti-Phishing Working Group, and the Stop. Think. Connect. public awareness campaign, by offering the .

I encourage you to take the quiz and test your knowledge. Once you’re done, post a badge to your Wall and share tips with your friends so they too can become more aware.


Top 10 Facebook Pages For October 2010

It’s every page owners dream – making the Top 10 Facebook Fan Page list. It takes work, dedication, and an extremely popular brand. Does your brand have what it takes to compete with the most popular fan pages on Facebook? Check and see who you need to compete with, as of October 2010.

  1. – 25,044,094 People Like This
  2. - 22,843,440 People Like This
  3. – 22,043,481 People Like This
  4. - 20,860,898 People Like This
  5. – 19,517,600 People Like This
  6. – 17,158,443 People Like This
  7. – 17,217,898 People Like This
  8. – 17,030,878 People Like This
  9. – 16,032,332 People Like This
  10. – 15,728,345 People Like This

Do you have what it takes for fans to “Like” you?



Facebook Launches Its Facebook Live Streaming Video Channel

Facebook has just launched its own real time web-streaming called Facebook Live!

Facebook announced this is just the beginning, and that they plan to use the channel for news streams, press events, special celebrity events, and interviews.

The first event streamed out August 13, 2010, featuring actress America Ferrera and Ryan Piers Williams discussing their new movie “The Dry Land.” Past events and interviews are available to view for those who missed them.

Facebook Live uses Livestream, and like most live video platforms, has integrated chat and broadcast feeds. You are also able to update your status right from the app page, as well as invite friends to join in watching.

Facebook Live is embeddable, allowing you to post broadcasts on your own webpage, as well as Share with Facebook friends and Twitter followers.


Head on over and see what it is all about. The is available to all users, without having to add anything to your profile.


Facebook: Beware of $1000 Gift Card & iPod Events

Fake Gift Card fan pages and groups are certainly not new to Facebook. These deceptive pages have been a thorn in Facebooks side for a long time. Most of them are designed to look similar to a corporate offer, such as the $1000 Best Buy Gift Card, and entice those who arrive on the page with a sweet deal. Even the most savvy internet users often fall for the scheme.

Most of these schemes are run similar to the clickjacking pages we mentioned last month. Those arriving on the page are told they either need to “Like” the page to receive the offered “gift” or invite X number of friends. The sheer volume of “Invite your friend” offers that have circulated in the past has many Facebook users wary of such schemes. This loss of potential targets has the schemers moving in new and inventive directions such as clickjacking, and down right compromising user accounts.

Keep in mind, a user must at some point have clicked on something that transferred information to a potential hacker, in order to have their account compromised. It could have been a downloading a file containing trojan software or providing sensitive personal information somewhere they thought was secure. Either of these could give someone access to your computer and Facebook account without your permission.

The latest scheme rearing its ugly head is the creation of Gift Card and electronic giveaway “Events”. These events appear to your friends as though you have not only referred them and endorsed the event, but actually created it as well. Events on Facebook detail who the creator is, causing friends to automatically believe the scheme.

For example, I received two such event notifications today, both from the same friend. I immediately suspected his account had been compromised and brought it to his attention, but the damage had been done – the event was sent out to hundreds of his friends.

The first event, a $1000 Best Buy Gift Card giveaway was removed very quickly by Facebook, and I was unable to take a screenshot of it for you all. I did still have a copy of the email sent though, shown below:


Facebook $1000 Best Buy Gift Card Event Email


The second event was for a free iPad, and gave instructions to those wanting one that they needed to enter their email address and shipping address into a off-Facebook webpage, and then wait 3-5 days for their iPad to arrive.


Facebook Scam: iPad For Free Event


In a recent article on PCWorld.com, Robert McMillan of IDGNews.net wrote:

In the past months, fan pages have popped up all over the social networking site, offering too-good-to-be-true gift cards. There’s the $500 Whole Foods card, the $10 Walmart offer, and the $1,000 Ikea gift card. The Ikea page put these gift card scams on the map last month, when it quickly racked up more than 70,000 fans before being snuffed. Facebook has also taken down Target and iTunes gift card scam pages in the past few months.

The purpose of these schemes is to gather either personal information from users, or to deceive them into completing some sort of affiliate offer. Many of the offers are offered by legitimate affiliate marketing companies, but the methods these unscrupulous affiliates use to get you to do what they want is a major underlying problem. Much of the information they gather either ends up costing you money or could lead to identity theft.

Facebook users need to be not only wary, but vigilant about what they click; especially on social networks such as Facebook. Trojans can be downloaded unknowingly anywhere and then used against you to deceive hundreds and/or thousands of people. A good quality Anti Virus program will help combat those that slip through your radar.

Real corporate offers will also have highly professional fan pages, and they most certainly will not be directing you to a $0.99 .info domain name. “Like” buttons are embedded into a well designed page – not a plain white blank page. Check carefully though as many of these plain pages may show comments from supposed users claiming the event offer “worked”.

Dig around a little first. If the offer is legitimate, it will still be there after you take a few more minutes to check it out first.


Vote On Facebook: Your School Could Win $500,000 From Kohl’s Cares

In celebration of Kohl’s Cares® 10th anniversary, they are donating $500,000 to 20 different schools – for a total of $10 million! You can help your local school win simply by installing the , placing your votes and then telling other friends and family.

Kohl’s Cares LLC, a subsidiary of Kohl’s Department Stores, allows anyone on Facebook who “Likes” Kohl’s up to 20 votes. You are able to vote up to 5 times per school. This enables you to not only help your own school win, but possibly one that other family members attend.

Eligible schools include operating public schools in the U.S. (excluding Puerto Rico) that serve grades kindergarten through 12, as defined by the U.S. Department of Education, and nonprofit private and charter schools that serve grades kindergarten through 12 and are run by or supported by legal U.S. residents or a U.S. corporation.

Fans have the opportunity to post “ideas” they have about how their favorite school could spend the contest winnings should they win. In order for a school to win, it must have a minimum of one posted idea, so make sure you put in your suggestion.

This contest is being run solely via Facebook, and voting ends September 3, 2010. Be sure to head on over to , cast your votes, and share the contest details with your friends and family. Only 10 schools win – hopefully it will be yours!


Facebook Hoax: Christopher Butterfield Hacker Warning

Facebook Hoax: Christopher Butterfield Hacker WarningCurrently circulating Facebook walls is a message warning friends that by simply accepting a specific friend request, you will have your computer and all your friends will be hacked too. This is not only untrue, but impossible.

In addition to Christopher Butterfield and Jennifer Christina Smith, other known names included in this hoax are Claudia Rivalta, Daniela Mainardi, and Simon Ashton. I am sure there are dozens more floating around as well, but will appear something similar to:

Do not accept a friend request from a CHRISTOPHER BUTTERFIELD and JENNIFER CHRISTINA SMITH they are hackers. Tell all on your list because if somebody on your list adds them, they’ll be on your list too. They’ll figure out ur computer’s ID and address, so copy & paste this message to everyone even if u don’t care for them cause if he hacks them, he hacks you. Be careful.

As you can see, the message warns that by accepting a “friend request” from Christopher Butterfield (or whatever other name is used), not only allows him or her to hack into your computer and gain access to your email account, but also the accounts of anyone on your friends list. The warning has been circulating rapidly through Facebook, other social networking websites, and by email.

This is technically impossible. Hackers (or crackers) use a variety of ways to trick you into giving them access to your computer or personal information. They may send a phishing email coercing info from you, or they may trick you into downloading something that installs trojan software, allowing your computer to be controlled remotely. But, even the best hackers cannot get into your system simply by being on your friends list. There has to be an exchange of information, or the transfer of a file in order for this to happen.

Unfortunately, it is hoaxes such as these, where people feel it is better to be safe than sorry, that turn us jaded and suspicious of all ‘pass it on’ messages. This inadvertently affects truly important valid messages and warnings from being sent to friends.

Be cautious of sending things on to friends. A 30 second Google search on a section of the warning will almost always let you know if it is real, or simply another silly hoax.


Facebook Confirms Again ‘No Profile Spy’

The dreaded “see who’s been viewing your profile”, aka Profile Spy, has reared its ugly head yet again. Late last year, the hoax had millions of Facebook users scrambling to either try it out, or hide out!

Facebook Security itself recently posted the following statement, proving that any sort of advertised “Profile Spy” does not work, nor can work. The functionality required for an application such as this work has been disabled by Facebook developers.

Here is what they have to say:

On Facebook, there’s no way to see who has visited your profile. We’ve also prevented others from providing this functionality. We’re working hard to block and remove websites, Pages, and applications that claim to do this. If you see one, don’t be fooled, and report it to us immediately.

This therefore includes such sites out there as profilespy.info. (I have intentionally not linked to the domain but feel free to visit it if you wish!) The page redirects visitors to an on-page application called Facebook Profile Snitch. I strongly do not recommend you enter your email address into the box provided. The name of the domain you are redirected to (theblackboxproject) is suspect enough and should raise red flags to those who noticed. The app is most likely some form of email harvesting, most likely redirecting you again to some sort of paid survey set up.

Hopefully the actions of Facebook Security will help reduce the number of deceptive groups and apps from popping up. I honestly suspect it will not though, as there just seems to be so many people out there who really do want to see who is looking at their profile



Facebook: “More Similar Posts” Link Gone From News Feed?

As of about an hour ago, it seems that the “See More Similar Posts” link has been removed from our Facebook News Feed.

The implementation of this feature back in April, had almost all Facebook users either applauding or cursing its addition. For users who did not play games, it afforded them the opportunity to actually see personal status updates from friends and family. However, for gamers and app users, it became nothing short of a time consuming nightmare…

The sudden grouping of multiple posts from one game or app, made playing many of the most popular games extremely time consuming. Players would have to click to open the link, scroll to click the item they wanted, and then start the process again. I can say from personal experience, it would usually leave me thoroughly confused about where exactly I had left off.

Based on comments around various forums and the Facebook News Feed wall itself, the Similar Posts grouping resulted in many players quiting their favorite games. I suspect the sharp decline that many applications have seen over the past few months can be partially attributed to this feature.

Now the groupings seem to have disappeared. Is it permanent? We don’t know. It could just be a glitch, but now that it is gone, I actually-sort-of-kinda miss it!

What do you think? Did you like the feature, hate it, or even miss it now? Let us know below!


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