Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Facebook porn

I knew it was only a matter of time before I'd get quoted on something related to pornography. When a Canadian company allegedly hammered Facebook's servers kajillions of times in a brute force attempt to obtain user data, Facebook sued them. SlickCash.com is the porn site in question. It's owned by Istra Holdings. I have no idea who comes up with these names.

IT World Canada's Nestor Arellano interviewed me for an article, Marketing experts laud Facebook law suit against Canadian porn company, which published earlier today. I was quoted opposite marketing wizard and fellow Montreal native Mitch Joel. Here's what I said:
A Canadian technology analyst said the legal action sends the right message to would be attackers.

"The move is sending the message to users that Facebook is diligent in protecting its community and the company is telling hackers it is prepared to use an iron fist to carry this out," said Carmi Levy, research analyst and senior vice-president of AR Communications in Toronto.

"There are numerous organizations that illegally harvest personal data from various sites. They aggregate the information and resell it to unscrupulous online marketing firms," he said.

[Snip]

Some methods of obtaining data are outright illegal such as the Facebook attack and the credit card data theft perpetrated against U.S. department store TJ Maxx earlier this year, said Levy. "Other activities occur in gray areas," he added.

When people sign on for membership in sites such as Facebook, there are privacy rules that cover the member's information. However, other publicly accessible sites do not have this protection, Levy said.

"Information contained in public message boards such as Google Groups, Yahoo Groups, UseNet or blog sites can be accessed by anyone. It may not be ethical to obtain personal data from these sites, but it is not illegal as well," he said.

[Snip]

Companies that are looking into establishing an online presence in social networking should carefully consider the move because proprietary data and confidential company information not to mention a potential lawsuit is on the line, said Levy.

"Work closely with the site. Find out if they can provide you with the protection your data requires," he said.

"If they can't guarantee protection for your users and your company's data, reconsider the move," Levy advised.
Your turn: I'm commenting on porn. Should momma be proud?

One more thing: I'm a Facebooker, too, so I suppose that porn company would have found me eventually. Click here to find me there.

OK, I lied, it was really two things: More uber-fun media stuff happening this week, including a scheduled BNN interview tomorrow morning. I'll post links as soon as they're up.

3 comments:

Ontario Emperor said...

Too bad they couldn't have worked smoldering laptops into the article. :)

As we establish our personas on the Internet, we often forget how much we are revealing - especially, as you note, in places such as Usenet and the other groups. And if false information is aggregated along with the true information about you, the results could be more damaging.

Dara said...

So I'm kind of new to the whole Facebook/MySpace/social networking phenomena. But I was heartened by your comment that there are protective measures in place that do not exist on Yahoo Groups, which has been around for many more years. Does Michele know that your blog is informative as well as entertaining?

facebookslut said...

Very interesting post