Facebook Inc (FB)’s New App For Teens Poses A Big Security Issue

Facebook Inc (FB)

Facebook Inc ’s newest app – dubbed Lifestage – is aimed at teenagers. It’s an amazing concept that captures some energy that the social media giant had as a startup. However, the app has got a big privacy issue that may affect the teenagers. The app depends on self-reporting for age, which is the only (probably) and the main problem with Lifestage, notes a report from The Next Web.

Facebook Inc NASDAQ:FB

What is the issue with Lifestage?

Recently, Business Insider highlighted the issue, saying all the user has to do is say they are under 18, and Lifestage allows them to choose a high school to identify with. Even more troublesome was the Facebook’s response to the report.

“We encourage anyone using the app who experiences or witnesses any concerning activity to report it to us through the reporting options built into the app. We take these reports seriously,” the firm said.

Facebook Inc is asking teenagers to report suspicious activity instead of acknowledging there is an issue with the structure of the app. There have been no reports of adults attempting to harm or even meet teens via Lifestage. But, it should also be noted that getting hold of someone via Lifestage is not possible as it is a one-way street, the report notes.

Instead, Facebook’s new app allows its users direct onlookers somewhere else for contact. If an adult attempted to meet with a teen, then it would be only done via Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat or other social platforms, the report notes. But, the problem is Lifestage can act as a precursor to that activity. And, it is not possible to know if a person tries to fake his/her identity on Lifestage to lure a child into something criminal.

Lifestage sounds like a good app for teens, but Facebook should work on implementing a way to accurately verify age.

Facebook looks to challenge Twitch

Separately, Facebook could prove a potential threat to Amazon-owned Twitch, the largest streaming game service. Twitch is available on computers, tablets, set-top boxes like the Apple TV and on phones.

Facebook Inc declared its partnership with the gaming powerhouse Blizzard Entertainment in June. As per the deal, all the games of Blizzard from “Diablo 3” to “World of Warcraft” to “Overwatch” to “Hearthstone” are streamable on Facebook Live.

On Friday, Blizzard announced that the service is available now. Leo Olebe – Facebook’s director of games partnerships – told BI, “Imagine every game that people are playing, regardless of platform, they have the opportunity to do one-button ‘Go Live’ to Facebook. That would be pretty awesome!”

When BI asked, if it is making that concept a reality? Olebe said yes, adding gamers are everywhere and on every different device, and the social media wants to be where the gamers are.

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Aman is MBA (Finance) with an experience on both marketing and Finance side. He has work as a Risk Analyst for AIR Worldwide, and is currently leading VeRa FinServ, a Financial Research firm. Favorite pastimes include watching science fiction movies, playing PC games and cricket.


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