The Bankwatch

Tracking the consumer evolution of financial services

Facebook fake news is not new

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This is the thin edge of the wedge that goes way deeper.

Back in 2006 the Walmart fake marketing situation erupted. The basic theme goes back to the “on the internet nobody knows you are a dog”. You can say anything with conviction and supposed analysis and it must be true because it is there on the internet.

Now there is an even deeper school of thought that this is not new, and that marketing has always been this way.

However the adoption of technology with the complete absorption by a whole new demographic means fake news becomes real news. We have a rapid ignoring of MSM by all generations.

However I am not sure that it is any worse than it has ever been with biased opinion-ed comments in MSM. But Facebook is more pervasive and visible, and all problems point to Mark. That does make this a new problem.

Now, having said all that the talking points that Mark outlines below are frankly useless. For example the reference to fact checking is just that … a reference.

I publish this blog and I post periodically, much less than before due to actual work matters but it is here and it is me. The people who read my blog have some interest in banking technology. Whereas Facebook et al have the problem of talking to everyone with varied interests.

This is an extreme comparison but it highlights the problem Facebook faces. It is possible to become so large that you influence such a large group which was never expected. How do you manage that.

 

 

 

__________

Mark Zuckerberg
November 19 at 1:15am ·
A lot of you have asked what we’re doing about misinformation, so I wanted to give an update.
The bottom line is: we take misinformation seriously. Our goal is to connect people with the stories they find most meaningful, and we know people want accurate information. We’ve been working on this problem for a long time and we take this responsibility seriously. We’ve made significant progress, but there is more work to be done.
Historically, we have relied on our community to help us understand what is fake and what is not. Anyone on Facebook can report any link as false, and we use signals from those reports along with a number of others — like people sharing links to myth-busting sites such as Snopes — to understand which stories we can confidently classify as misinformation. Similar to clickbait, spam and scams, we penalize this content in News Feed so it’s much less likely to spread.
The problems here are complex, both technically and philosophically. We believe in giving people a voice, which means erring on the side of letting people share what they want whenever possible. We need to be careful not to discourage sharing of opinions or to mistakenly restrict accurate content. We do not want to be arbiters of truth ourselves, but instead rely on our community and trusted third parties.
While the percentage of misinformation is relatively small, we have much more work ahead on our roadmap. Normally we wouldn’t share specifics about our work in progress, but given the importance of these issues and the amount of interest in this topic, I want to outline some of the projects we already have underway:
– Stronger detection. The most important thing we can do is improve our ability to classify misinformation. This means better technical systems to detect what people will flag as false before they do it themselves.
– Easy reporting. Making it much easier for people to report stories as fake will help us catch more misinformation faster.
– Third party verification. There are many respected fact checking organizations and, while we have reached out to some, we plan to learn from many more.
– Warnings. We are exploring labeling stories that have been flagged as false by third parties or our community, and showing warnings when people read or share them.
– Related articles quality. We are raising the bar for stories that appear in related articles under links in News Feed.
– Disrupting fake news economics. A lot of misinformation is driven by financially motivated spam. We’re looking into disrupting the economics with ads policies like the one we announced earlier this week, and better ad farm detection.
– Listening. We will continue to work with journalists and others in the news industry to get their input, in particular, to better understand their fact checking systems and learn from them.
Some of these ideas will work well, and some will not. But I want you to know that we have always taken this seriously, we understand how important the issue is for our community and we are committed to getting this right.
A lot of you have asked what we’re doing about misinformation, so I wanted to give an update.
The bottom line is: we take misinformation seriously. Our goal is to connect people with the stories they find most meaningful, and we know people want accurate information. We’ve been working on this problem for a long time and we take this responsibility seriously. We’ve made significant progress, but there is more work to be done.
Historically, we have relied on our community to help us understand what is fake and what is not. Anyone on Facebook can report any link as false, and we use signals from those reports along with a number of others — like people sharing links to myth-busting sites such as Snopes — to understand which stories we can confidently classify as misinformation. Similar to clickbait, spam and scams, we penalize this content in News Feed so it’s much less likely to spread.
The problems here are complex, both technically and philosophically. We believe in giving people a voice, which means erring on the side of letting people share what they want whenever possible. We need to be careful not to discourage sharing of opinions or to mistakenly restrict accurate content. We do not want to be arbiters of truth ourselves, but instead rely on our community and trusted third parties.
While the percentage of misinformation is relatively small, we have much more work ahead on our roadmap. Normally we wouldn’t share specifics about our work in progress, but given the importance of these issues and the amount of interest in this topic, I want to outline some of the projects we already have underway:
– Stronger detection. The most important thing we can do is improve our ability to classify misinformation. This means better technical systems to detect what people will flag as false before they do it themselves.
– Easy reporting. Making it much easier for people to report stories as fake will help us catch more misinformation faster.
– Third party verification. There are many respected fact checking organizations and, while we have reached out to some, we plan to learn from many more.
– Warnings. We are exploring labeling stories that have been flagged as false by third parties or our community, and showing warnings when people read or share them.
– Related articles quality. We are raising the bar for stories that appear in related articles under links in News Feed.
– Disrupting fake news economics. A lot of misinformation is driven by financially motivated spam. We’re looking into disrupting the economics with ads policies like the one we announced earlier this week, and better ad farm detection.
– Listening. We will continue to work with journalists and others in the news industry to get their input, in particular, to better understand their fact checking systems and learn from them.
Some of these ideas will work well, and some will not. But I want you to know that we have always taken this seriously, we understand how important the issue is for our community and we are committed to getting this right.

Written by Colin Henderson

November 21, 2016 at 01:33

Posted in Uncategorized

Canada Immigration site down at 23:25 US election night

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Written by Colin Henderson

November 8, 2016 at 23:26

Posted in Uncategorized

20 years of online banking

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Just a note of historical signifance. It was 20 years ago at BMO we launched mbanx, which was the first online banking site.

Written by Colin Henderson

October 16, 2016 at 22:56

Posted in Uncategorized

DDoS attacks at unprecedented levels hit Krebs


DDoS attacks are little understood by most, yet pose a significant threat to our online lifestyle.

Brian Krebs is an independent journalist who has singlehandedly sought out bad actors performing security attacks varying from online ransomeware to Mexican ABM card skimming.

Krebsonsecurity.com has been hit over the last couole of days with DDoS on a scale that he indicates is unprecedented. The scale is over 600Gb per second – this in comparison to previous large attacks in the 200 Gb range. Furthermore the methods used indicate botnet leveraging of applicances previously never considered. These include personal home routers, which have never changed their default username/password combinations (admin/admin etc).

The scale is such that Akamai who had previously offerred free support, have backed off that free support.

The attacks against Krebs are personal it would appear based on the detective work he has performed. The scary part is just that. By only going after him now suggests the bad actors always could and just didn’t bother until now.

Ars Technica

The crippling distributed denial-of-service attacks started shortly after Krebs published stories stemming from the hack of a DDoS-for-hire service known as vDOS. The first article analyzed leaked data that identified some of the previously anonymous people closely tied to vDOS. It documented how they took in more than $600,000 in two years by knocking other sites offline. A few days later, Krebs ran a follow-up piece detailing the arrests of two men who allegedly ran the service. A third post in the series is here.

Written by Colin Henderson

September 25, 2016 at 00:05

Posted in Uncategorized

The Tragically Hip farewell concert in Kingston brings Canada to a standstill


Few outside Ontario Canada know about this.  I watched as the national broadcaster CBC showed it ad free.  This was up there with the <a href=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2tAE2K3YT_A”>Cream farewell at the Albert Hall</a>.

I admit to not even being a Hip fan.  They just were not that big in western Canada where I spent my early time.  But somehow they were always there, and the music is in your bones if you lived in Canada.

Gord Downie is diagnosed with terminal brain cancer, and that does make this an actual farewell.

btw, The Hip, aka Downie lyrics, are the only band that will require access to wikipedia to know what the hell he is talking about.  Brilliant !!

hip_downie

Canada, yes the entire country, stood still and put even the Olympics aside for a moment.

The secret rules of engagement are hard to endorse

When the appearance of conflict meets the appearance of force

But I can guarantee, there’ll be no knock on the door

I’m total pro here, that’s what I’m here for

I come from downtown, born ready for you

Armed with skill and it’s frustration, and grace, too

Written by Colin Henderson

August 20, 2016 at 23:37

Posted in Uncategorized

Hong Kong-based Bitcoin exchange Bitfinex customers lose 120K BTC


Bitcoin reporting continues to be as vague as the average persons understanding of Blockchain. Nonetheless this loss will be closely followed. The last big loss was 2 years~ ago at MtGox in Japan, and that resulted in the exchange being shut down.

Following MtGox closing in bankruptcy, here are the reasons according to Wired:

But on the inside, according to some who were there, Mt. Gox was a messy combination of poor management, neglect, and raw inexperience.

So Coindesk are doing no-one any favours by attempting to deflect the Bitfinex loss with a mid article shift to a discussion about Bitcoin mining activity and that effect on Bitcoin prices. Interesting but not the point.

The issue is security of the Blockchain and why this new loss occurred, apparently related to social media, but with no details. Maybe this loss is something to do with phishing or someone using the same password across multiple sites. Whatever the cause it is important to elaborate very quickly if confidence in Blockchain activities is to be established. This quote hidden in the Coindesk article is critical.

Market observer and trader Jacob Eliosoff provided similar input, telling CoinDesk that the event had sparked a new wave of uncertainty.

“The big question will be how much was stolen and whether Bitfinex will make customers whole,” he said.

No-one loses money with online investing with their bank and there is a reason for that. Blockchain has many advantages, but confidence will always come back to the institution involved, and not the encryption methodology; this is entirely due to the human component, which is an unfortunate reality.

Written by Colin Henderson

August 3, 2016 at 00:35

Posted in Uncategorized

Bank customers move from online banking to mobile apps


The ongoing demise of online banking and its replacement by mobile banking continues. These statistics overshadow the almost 50% reduction trend in branch based transactions in UK that is expected to continue significantly to 2021. They also note this is not a reflection of bank disaffection; rather it is a shift in how customers interact with Banks.

For industry wonks click through for the BBA/EY report.

Apps crush internet for UK banking logins

In 2015, there were 4.3 million online banking logins each day, down two per cent on the previous year, the BBA’s Way We Bank Now report shows. In contrast, banking app logins topped 11 million a day, a 50% rise on 2014 as 40,000 apps were downloaded every 24 hours.

The number of payments made using banking apps hit 347 million last year, a 54% rise. Internet banking still has the edge here, used for 417 million payments in 2015, but this was up just two per cent.





Further the EY lead notes something of particular interest

However, they also face difficulties in bringing legacy infrastructure in line with their new aspirations and creating an organisational environment that attracts top talent to achieve their aims.








Written by Colin Henderson

July 25, 2016 at 02:48

Posted in Uncategorized

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