Antony Mayfield's blog
Facebook apps spyware scare
Facebook apps spyware scare

Facebook apps spyware scare


I get the feeling that Facebook apps introducing spyware to users’ computers is a more significant issue to the social network than data portability for most people on it at the moment.

Mashable covers Facebook’s banbning of the Secret Crush application which installed spyware called Zango on people’s machines which

…the Secret Crush application was reported to have installing the Zango spyware on users computers, operating off the fact that some folks out there really wanna know who’s secretly in love with them. After initiating the installation the application, the malware could easily be spread like Mono in a high school lunch room. Users were asked to invite at least 5 more friends before continuing with the install, after which they were then invited to download the Crush Calculator application where the Zango software was hidden.

Mashable adds:

Unfortunately this brings about much of the fear that some had about Facebook’s initial use of an open platform for applications to be access by users: it could be a breeding ground for malware. What’s more, is Facebook’s newsfeed functionality makes this even more likely, with the gang mentality and peer pressure that comes along with receiving invites and updates from your friends.

This will make users who felt uncomfortable about Facebook apps / use a little more averse to using the service.

It’s also confirmation of every IT department’s fears / warnings about why people shouldn’t be using FB at work (any by extension, any other social media applications). A setback, then, for advocates of giving employees access to social computing tools freely in the workplace…

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