In early August, the Globe Independent launched a website filled with news stories plagiarized from NBC News, the Washington Post, and other outlets. By September, the impostor news site had amassed more than 30,000 likes on Facebook thanks to dozens of ads it purchased, some of which were critical of China.
During an election season in which Facebook has promised to stop manipulation of its platform, these unknown purveyors of copy-pasted news violated the social network’s policy against fake accounts, and may have evaded its rules for ads about political issues. The plagiarized site’s activity, which went unnoticed until BuzzFeed News alerted Facebook, follows other high-profile failures that question the social media company’s ability to enforce its policies less than a month before the US election.
The Globe Independent page also unwittingly revealed other, apparently unrelated, inauthentic pages, thanks to Facebook’s “Related Pages” feature. Visitors to the Globe Independent’s page were suggested pages with names “the Tide Hunter” and “the Star Lane.” Those are part of a network of over 120 pages, which have more than 1 million total likes and are running Facebook ads for what appears to be a cryptocurrency scam. A Facebook spokesperson told BuzzFeed News there was no connection between the Globe Independent page and the cryptocurrency pages but declined to comment further.
“Networks like this just show how profitable it can be to traffic in all kinds of online scams,” said Joan Donovan, the research director of the Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy. “In the early phase of a disinformation campaign, it can be difficult to tell what the motives are, but this shows just how crucial it is to use Facebook ads to grow audiences and stage legitimacy before really turning into a full-blown influence operation.”
It’s unclear who was behind
Amazon is introducing new palm recognition technology in a pair of Seattle stores and sees broader uses in places like stadiums and offices
SEATTLE — Amazon has introduced new palm recognition technology in a pair of Seattle stores and sees a broader potential audience in stadiums, offices and other gated or secured locations.
“And it’s contactless, which we think customers will appreciate, especially in current times,” Kumar wrote in a blog post Tuesday.
Like the human fingerprint, every palm is unique. Unlike fingerprints, the palm is not used for broader identification purposes because more body specific information is needed. Any palm image proffered for use is never stored on the Amazon One device, the company said, for security reasons.
The data is encrypted in a secured sector of the cloud that was custom built by Amazon, and customers can also delete their Amazon One-related data permanently at any time.
The company expects to roll out Amazon One as an option in other Amazon stores in the coming months, which could mean Whole Foods Market grocery stores. But Amazon believes the technology is applicable in a myriad of secured locations.
“We believe Amazon One has broad applicability beyond our retail stores, so we also plan to offer the service to third parties like retailers, stadiums, and office buildings so that