news analysis and commentary

Stop the Stalking

Facebook recently shut down a cyber stalking application. Dan Loewenherz developed the application, named The Breakup Notifier.

When installed on your Facebook account, the app claims to monitor a person’s romantic relationships and will send you an alert as soon as the relationship status changes. If you have an interest in that person, the “change of status” alarm may be priceless.

Word of the app spread quickly, and it was a big hit. Facebook immediately shut them down, claiming the shut down was due to the popularity of the app, not about issues of information security, privacy, or morality.

Whatever the reason for the shutdown, The Breakup Notifier is not available.  Could it be the Facebook is trying to limit its liability if its members choose to use it for malevolent intent? From another perspective, could Facebook simply be trying to protect its members?

Once again, a tool has been made available to the human race, and people are abusing the tool. Cyber Social networking is the tool. Cyber stalking and identity theft criminals have seized upon the ease the social networking on the World Wide Web.

Analogous to a loaded gun, caution lies in the hands of the end user in this instance. Social network users should use extreme caution when creating online accounts. Security settings should be considered and the content of the accounts must be considered vulnerable.

Below is a video about a phone app that deletes your text messages automatically.

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