Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Zuckerberg's "endorsement" of Romney was a real accident, not a hack; but web visitors should be wary when they see something like this

So, Mark Zuckerberg’s “unusual” endorsement of Mitt Romney last night (with a Facebook “like”) was not the result of hackers. It was just a “simple mistake” and a subtle programming issue within Facebook.  Gawker has an explanation here. Zuckerberg was trying to “like” a post on Slate’s FB page by Farhad Manjoo (here, and it’s funny). OKay, I didn’t click on the Mitt Romney domain because I was “suspicious”.  Should I have been?  Probably.  False alarms don't mean you don't have to be careful; they just lower the guard for the next problem.  Nevertheless, I had already tweeted Webroot about the "problem" before I saw Gawker's explanation. 

A CEO of a service provider probably would not endorse a specific poltical candidate.  But this “endorsement” almost seemed reasonable.  After all, Romney is perceived as pro-business but moderate (despite his religious background) on social issues, perhaps almost liberal on some.   And Romney, like Zuckerberg, understands money unusually well.  They have some things in common.

An amusing coincidence was that Romney lost all three primaries/caucuses to Rick Santorum last night, and Santorum is socially conservative.  I wondered if there was a hidden message.

But, if you see a post on a major site from the owners of the site that does not look reasonable, you probably should beware.  It could be a hack.

I often get spam from “AOL customer service” on my AOL account, without the blue official signal.  I don’t know why AOL doesn’t catch it.

Picture: My AOL spam file.  

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