Who’s to blame for the leaking of 50 million Facebook users’ data
founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg broke several days of silence in the face of a raging privacy storm to go on CNN
this week to say he was sorry. He also admitted the company had made mistakes; said it had breached the trust of users; and said he regretted not telling Facebookers at the time their information had been misappropriated.
Meanwhile, shares in the company have been taking a battering. And Facebook is now facing multiple shareholder and user lawsuits
Pressed on why he didn’t inform users, in 2015, when Facebook says it found out about this policy breach, Zuckerberg avoided a direct answer — instead fixing on what the company did (asked Cambridge Analytica
and the developer whose app was used to suck out data to delete the data) — rather than explaining the thinking behind
Continue reading "Facebook was warned about app permissions in 2011"
The UK’s data watchdog, the ICO, finally
obtained a warrant to enter and search the offices of Cambridge Analytica late Friday — carrying out an evidence gathering sweep of the company into the small hours of Saturday morning.
is at the centre of a data misuse storm that’s wiped billions off the value of Facebook since newspaper revelations
late last week revealed the extent of data swiped by the UK political consultancy which intended to use the information for the Trump campaign.
In a statement
on its website today, the ICO said:
The warrant to inspect the premises of Cambridge Analytica was executed at 20.00 on 23 March 2018. Our investigators left the premises at about 03.00.
We will now need to assess and consider the evidence before deciding the next steps and coming to any conclusions.
This is one part of a larger investigation by
Continue reading "Cambridge Analytica raided by UK data watchdog"
, the U.K. fintech startup that wanted to make it more convenient to pay your restaurant or bar bill, has been acquired by American Express — as the credit card behemoth plans to beef up its payment options for Amex members.
According to sources the deal quietly completed in October last year for a final price of $13.3 million (approx. £10.1m). However, due to an eleventh-hour preferential debt round and after fees, only some shareholders made a profit. I also understand from one source that Cake had raised a total of £4.5 million in equity and £1.4 million in debt. Part of the equity funding was a £1 million crowdfunding round on Crowdcube in 2015.
Confirming the acquisition, American Express gave TechCrunch the following statement:
Last year American Express acquired Cake Technologies. This year, we will be on-boarding Cake and their technologies to
Continue reading "American Express quietly acquired UK fintech startup Cake for $13.3M"
French startup Molotov
has built the best TV streaming service in its home country. Unfortunately, if you tried using the service in other European countries, Molotov
would simply stop working. The startup now lets you stream your content when you’re traveling across the European Union.
The European Union has been working hard on creating a digital single market across Europe. And the Council recently adopted
a regulation to ban geoblocking across the European Union. European countries and online services have nine months to comply with the regulation.
And it looks like Molotov is complying as quickly as possible. You can expect a bunch of similar announcements in the coming months.
Molotov now has 5 million users. You can watch up to 80 different channels live, and on most channels, you can start over at the beginning of a program. Molotov also lets you search and watch content on catchup platforms.
Continue reading "Molotov is no longer geoblocked in Europe"
The world is awash in data, and while OpenSignal
, a startup based out of London that’s probably best known for its mobile network speed and weather reports — which it compiles by tapping sensors from a network of smartphones from 100 million people — has picked up $8 million in funding to expand its team and products. (Yes, it is hiring.)
The Series B round was led by Octopus Ventures. Previous backers Qualcomm Ventures, O’Reilly AlphaTech Ventures and Passion Capital also participated. The company is not revealing its valuation — “it was a significant upround over the valuation in our Series A,” Brendan Gill, CEO and co-founder, said when asked. OpenSignal
had raised only around $5.3 million prior to this, and was last valued at $15.46 million post-money in its Series A, according to PitchBook
The funding — an oversubscribed round, according to Gill — comes during a
Continue reading "OpenSignal, which taps sensors on 100M smartphones to monitor network speed and weather, raises $8M"
Blockchain technology and the decentralizing effects of distributed ledgers have enormous amounts of potential and may mean the Internet will never be the same again. The fact that one could eventually run vast applications without any servers is equally transformational. But it’s still very much a wild west out there in terms of ascertaining who is working on ‘the real deal’.
The blockchain world is currently weighed down with the expectations of dubious crypto-currency speculators and sky-high ICOs and hacks that are interfering with a frank conversation about the future.
Which is why TechCrunch
has decided to throw its hat into the ring and try to bring together the leading players in the space for a frank discussion and inquiry into this next phase in Zug, Switzerland, this July
At TC Sessions: Blockchain 2018, TechCrunch’s editors will bring together top figures in the blockchain technology world to discuss how and
Continue reading "Everledger’s Kemp and Omise’s Hasegawa join TC Blockchain"
With little fuss or fanfare, Cleo
, the London-based startup that offers an AI-powered chatbot as a replacement for your banking apps, has begun quietly offering its service to U.S. customers. Just 21 days in, I understand the U.K. fintech is already signing up 1,000 users across the pond per day
Described as an “alpha version” by the chatbot itself (see screenshot below), the U.S. version sees Cleo
add support for 647 banks and counting, a reflection of how fragmented the banking market in the U.S. is. As you’d expect, Cleo keeps the same conversational interface as its U.K. counterpart, albeit with what I’m told is a developing U.S. dialect (and selection of Gifs!). You can ask for and receive insights into your spending across multiple accounts and credit cards, broken down by transaction, category or merchant.
In addition, Cleo also lets you
Continue reading "Cleo, the chatbot that wants to replace your banking apps, has stealthily entered the U.S."