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The Hacker News - Cybersecurity News and Analysis: Facebook Messenger

Facebook Postpones Plans for E2E Encryption in Messenger, Instagram Until 2023

Facebook Postpones Plans for E2E Encryption in Messenger, Instagram Until 2023
November 21, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Meta, the parent company of Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp, disclosed that it doesn't intend to roll out default end-to-end encryption (E2EE) across all its messaging services until 2023, pushing its original plans by at least a year. "We're taking our time to get this right and we don't plan to finish the global rollout of end-to-end encryption by default across all our messaging services until sometime in 2023," Meta's head of safety, Antigone Davis,  said  in a post published in The Telegraph over the weekend. The new scheme, described as a "three-pronged approach," aims to employ a mix of non-encrypted data across its apps as well as account information and reports from users to improve safety and combat abuse, noting that the goal is to deter illegal behavior from happening in the first place, giving users more control, and actively encouraging users to flag harmful messages. Meta had previously  outlined  plans to be "fully end-to-en

Facebook Adds End-to-End Encryption for Audio and Video Calls in Messenger

Facebook Adds End-to-End Encryption for Audio and Video Calls in Messenger
August 14, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Facebook on Friday said it's extending end-to-end encryption (E2EE) for voice and video calls in Messenger, along with testing a new opt-in setting that will turn on end-to-end encryption for Instagram DMs. "The content of your messages and calls in an end-to-end encrypted conversation is protected from the moment it leaves your device to the moment it reaches the receiver's device," Messenger's Ruth Kricheli  said  in a post. "This means that nobody else, including Facebook, can see or listen to what's sent or said. Keep in mind, you can report an end-to-end encrypted message to us if something's wrong." The social media behemoth said E2EE is becoming the industry standard for improved privacy and security. It's worth noting that the company's flagship messaging service gained support for E2EE in text chats in 2016, when it added a " secret conversation " option to its app, while communications on its sister platform What

Facebook Messenger Bug Lets Hackers Listen to You Before You Pick Up the Call

Facebook Messenger Bug Lets Hackers Listen to You Before You Pick Up the Call
November 20, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Facebook has patched a bug in its widely installed Messenger app for Android that could have allowed a remote attacker to call unsuspecting targets and listen to them before even they picked up the audio call. The flaw was discovered and reported to Facebook by  Natalie Silvanovich  of Google's Project Zero bug-hunting team last month on October 6 with a 90-day deadline, and impacts version 284.0.0.16.119 (and before) of Facebook Messenger for Android. In a nutshell, the vulnerability could have granted an attacker who is logged into the app to simultaneously initiate a call and send a specially crafted message to a target who is signed in to both the app as well as another Messenger client such as the web browser. "It would then trigger a scenario where, while the device is ringing, the caller would begin receiving audio either until the person being called answers or the call times out," Facebook's Security Engineering Manager Dan Gurfinkel  said . According t

A Bug in Facebook Messenger for Windows Could've Helped Malware Gain Persistence

A Bug in Facebook Messenger for Windows Could've Helped Malware Gain Persistence
June 11, 2020Wang Wei
Cybersecurity researchers at Reason Labs, the threat research arm of security solutions provider Reason Labs , today disclosed details of a vulnerability they recently discovered in the Facebook Messenger application for Windows. The vulnerability, which resides in Messenger version 460.16, could allow attackers to leverage the app to potentially execute malicious files already present on a compromised system in an attempt to help malware gain persistent/extended access. Reason Labs shared its findings with Facebook in April, after which the social media company quickly patched the flaw with the release of an updated version of Facebook Messenger for Windows users via the Microsoft store. According to researchers, the vulnerable app triggers a call to load Windows Powershell from the C:\python27 path. This path is typically created when installing version 2.7 of the Python and does not commonly exist in most Windows installations. Attackers can hijack such calls that att

How to Delete Accidentally Sent Messages, Photos on Facebook Messenger

How to Delete Accidentally Sent Messages, Photos on Facebook Messenger
February 05, 2019Swati Khandelwal
Ever sent a message on Facebook Messenger then immediately regretted it, or an embarrassing text to your boss in the heat of the moment at late night, or maybe accidentally sent messages or photos to a wrong group chat? Of course, you have. We have all been through drunk texts and embarrassing photos many times that we later regret sending but are forced to live with our mistakes. Good news, Facebook is now giving us a way to erase our little embarrassments. After offering a similar feature to WhatsApp users two years ago, Facebook is now rolling out a long-promised option to delete text messages, photos, or videos inside its Messenger application starting from Tuesday, February 5. You Have 10 Minutes to Delete Sent Facebook Messages The unsend feature allows users to delete a message within 10 minutes of sending it, for both individual and group chats. Previously, Messenger offered the "delete" option that allowed users to only delete messages for them—but t

WhatsApp Group Video Call and Instagram Video Chat Are Coming Soon

WhatsApp Group Video Call and Instagram Video Chat Are Coming Soon
May 02, 2018Swati Khandelwal
Facebook announced a whole lot of new features at its 2018 Facebook F8 developers conference, including Dating on Facebook, letting users clear their web browsing history, real-time language translation within Messenger, and many more. Besides announcing exciting features for its social media platform, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg also gave us a quick look at the features Facebook introduced for companies that it owns, like WhatsApp and Instagram. During Facebook's F8 conference on Tuesday, Zuckerberg announced a long-awaited feature for WhatsApp— Group Video Calling . Yes, you heard that right. WhatsApp would soon be adding a group video calling feature to the popular end-to-end messaging app, making it possible for its over billion users to have face-to-face conversations with multiple people at once. Although there are not many details about the WhatsApp group video calling feature at this moment, it is clear that WhatsApp will now allow four people to have one-on-one

Along with Dating, Here's a List of New Features Coming to Facebook

Along with Dating, Here’s a List of New Features Coming to Facebook
May 02, 2018Swati Khandelwal
Facebook announced a whole lot of new features at its 2018 Facebook F8 developers conference, along with the keynote by its CEO Mark Zuckerberg addressing concerns from app developers after Facebook paused 3rd-party app review in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal. Here are some big takeaways from Zuckerberg's keynote on Day 1 of Facebook F8, held for two days, May 1 and 2, at the McEnery Convention Center in San Jose, California: FaceDate—Facebook's New Tinder-Like 'Dating' Feature Still Single? Don't worry because Facebook doesn't want you to remain single for long. The social network giant is introducing a new dating feature that will allow you to build your profile that will only be visible to other Facebook users (non-friends) who have also opted into looking for love. Dubbed FaceDate, the new feature will match your profile based on all its data with others to find potential suitors and messaging will happen in a dedicated inbox rat

Beware of Cryptocurrency Mining Virus Spreading Through Facebook Messenger

Beware of Cryptocurrency Mining Virus Spreading Through Facebook Messenger
December 22, 2017Swati Khandelwal
If you receive a video file ( packed in zip archive ) sent by someone ( or your friends ) on your Facebook messenger — just don't click on it. Researchers from security firm Trend Micro are warning users of a new cryptocurrency mining bot which is spreading through Facebook Messenger and targeting Google Chrome desktop users to take advantage of the recent surge in cryptocurrency prices. Dubbed Digmine , the Monero-cryptocurrency mining bot disguises as a non-embedded video file, under the name "video_xxxx.zip" (as shown in the screenshot), but is actually contains an AutoIt executable script. Once clicked, the malware infects victim's computer and downloads its components and related configuration files from a remote command-and-control (C&C) server. Digimine primarily installs a cryptocurrency miner, i.e.  miner.exe—a modified version of an open-source Monero miner known as XMRig —which silently mines the Monero cryptocurrency in the background for h

Beware of Windows/MacOS/Linux Virus Spreading Through Facebook Messenger

Beware of Windows/MacOS/Linux Virus Spreading Through Facebook Messenger
August 24, 2017Unknown
If you came across any Facebook message with a video link sent by anyone, even your friend — just don't click on it. Security researchers at Kaspersky Lab have spotted an ongoing cross-platform campaign on Facebook Messenger, where users receive a video link that redirects them to a fake website, luring them to install malicious software. Although it is still unclear how the malware spreads, researchers believe spammers are using compromised accounts, hijacked browsers, or clickjacking techniques to spread the malicious link. The attackers make use of social engineering to trick users into clicking the video link, which purports to be from one of their Facebook friends, with the message that reads "< your friend name > Video" followed by a bit.ly link, as shown. Here's How this Cross-Platform Malware Works: The URL redirects victims to a Google doc that displays a dynamically generated video thumbnail, like a playable movie, based on the sender'

Simple Bug allows Hackers to Read all your Private Facebook Messenger Chats

Simple Bug allows Hackers to Read all your Private Facebook Messenger Chats
December 14, 2016Mohit Kumar
A security researcher has discovered a critical vulnerability in Facebook Messenger that could allow an attacker to read all your private conversation, affecting the privacy of around 1 Billion Messenger users. Ysrael Gurt, the security researcher at BugSec and Cynet, reported a cross-origin bypass-attack against Facebook Messenger which allows an attacker to access your private messages, photos as well as attachments sent on the Facebook chat. To exploit this vulnerability, all an attacker need is to trick a victim into visiting a malicious website; that's all. Once clicked, all private conversations by the victim, whether from a Facebook's mobile app or a web browser, would be accessible to the attacker, because the flaw affected both the web chat as well as the mobile application. Dubbed " Originull ," the vulnerability actually lies in the fact that Facebook chats are managed from a server located at {number}-edge-chat.facebook.com, which is separate from

Beware! Malicious JPG Images on Facebook Messenger Spreading Locky Ransomware

Beware! Malicious JPG Images on Facebook Messenger Spreading Locky Ransomware
November 25, 2016Swati Khandelwal
If you receive an image file sent by someone, even your friend, on your Facebook Messenger, LinkedIn or any other social media platform, just DO NOT CLICK ON IT. Even JPG image file could eventually infect your computer with the infamous Locky Ransomware . Earlier this week, we reported a new attack campaign that used Facebook Messenger to spread Locky Ransomware via .SVG image files, although Facebook denied this was the case. Now, researchers have discovered that the ongoing spam campaign is also using boobytrapped .JPG image files in order to download and infect users with the Locky Ransomware via Facebook, LinkedIn, and other social networking platforms. Security researchers from Israeli security firm Check Point have reportedly discovered how cyber criminals are hiding malware in image files, and how they are executing the malware code within these images to infect social media users with Locky variants. According to researchers, malware authors have discovered secu

Spammers using Facebook Messenger to Spread Locky Ransomware

Spammers using Facebook Messenger to Spread Locky Ransomware
November 21, 2016Swati Khandelwal
If you came across any Facebook Message with an image file (exactly .SVG file format) send by any of your Facebook friends, just avoid clicking it. An ongoing Facebook spam campaign is spreading malware downloader among Facebook users by taking advantage of innocent-looking SVG image file to infect computers. If clicked, the file would eventually infect your PC with the nasty Locky Ransomware , a family of malware that has quickly become one of the favorite tools among criminals due to its infecting capabilities. Discovered by malware researcher Bart Blaze , the attack campaign uses Facebook Messenger to spread a malware downloader called Nemucod that takes the form of .SVG image files. Why SVG file? Hackers considered SVG (or Scalable Vector Graphics) files for spreading the malware downloader, because SVG has the ability to contain embedded content such as JavaScript, and can be opened in a modern web browser. Crooks added their malicious JavaScript code right inside th

How to Start Secret Conversations on Facebook Messenger

How to Start Secret Conversations on Facebook Messenger
October 06, 2016Swati Khandelwal
If you are looking for ways to start a secret conversation on Facebook Messenger with your friends, then you are at the right place. In this article, I am going to tell you about Facebook Messenger's new end-to-end encrypted chat feature, dubbed " Secret Conversations ," but before that, know why do you need your chats to be end-to-end encrypted? Your online privacy is under threat not only from online marketers and hackers but also from governments. Just yesterday, it was revealed that Yahoo secretly built hacking tool to scan all of its customers' incoming emails for US intelligence officials. So, to hide your personal life online from prying eyes, you need end-to-end encryption that allows you to send and receive messages in a way that no one, including the feds with a warrant, hackers and not even the company itself, can intercept or read them. Last year, WhatsApp became the largest end-to-end encrypted messaging network in history by rolling out anoth

Facebook Messenger adds End-to-End Encryption (Optional) for Secret Conversations

Facebook Messenger adds End-to-End Encryption (Optional) for Secret Conversations
July 08, 2016Swati Khandelwal
Facebook has begun rolling out end-to-end encryption for its Messenger app, thus making its users' conversations completely private. The end-to-end encryption feature, dubbed " Secret Conversations ," will allow Messenger users to send and receive messages in a way that no one, including the FBI with a warrant, hackers and not even Facebook itself, can intercept them. But, this new feature will currently be available only to a small number of users for testing. So if you are one of those lucky users, you will be able to send end-to-end encrypted Secret Conversations through your Messenger app. Rest of the Messenger users will get Secret Conversations feature later this summer or in early fall, the company wrote in a Facebook newsroom post published today. Sounds exciting, right? But, there's a catch: Your conversations on Messenger will not be end-to-end encrypted by default, like what WhatsApp and Apple are offering. Instead, Facebook will require

Facebook Sued for illegally Scanning Users' Private Messages

Facebook Sued for illegally Scanning Users' Private Messages
May 20, 2016Swati Khandelwal
Facebook is in trouble once again regarding its users' privacy. Facebook is facing a class-action lawsuit in Northern California over allegations that the company systematically scans its users' private messages on the social network without their consent and makes the profit by sharing the data with advertisers and marketers. According to the lawsuit filing, Facebook might have violated federal privacy laws by scanning users' private messages. Facebook routinely scans the URLs within users' private messages for several purposes like anti-malware protection and industry-standard searches for child pornography, but it has been claimed that the company is also using this data for advertising and other user-targeting services. Also Read:   Google to Face a Record $3.4 Billion AntiTrust Fine in Europe The plaintiffs, Matthew Campbell, and Michael Hurley argue that the Facebook is scanning and collecting URLs-related data in a searchable form, violating both the

Bored With Chess? Here's How To Play Basketball in Facebook Messenger

Bored With Chess? Here's How To Play Basketball in Facebook Messenger
March 19, 2016Unknown
Hope all of you have enjoyed the Game of Chess in the Facebook Messenger. But if you're quite bored playing Chess or not really good at the game, then you probably felt a bit excited about Facebook's recent inclusion of a little Basketball mini-game into Messenger. Now you can play Basketball through Facebook Messenger, just by typing in the Basketball emoji and sending to one of your friends. This would enable a secret Basketball mini-game between you and your friend. Here's How to Play Basketball: Just locate the basketball emoji from your emoji list, send to one of your friends and click it to start the game. Once sent, you would be taken to the Basketball court in a pure white background, where there is no sidebars of any friend suggestions or any promotional ads; only appears a basketball and a hoop, nothing else! All you have to do: Just Swipe up and Toss the basketball into the hoop. A single swipe on your phone in the directio

How to Unlock (and Play) Hidden Chess Game Inside Facebook Messenger

How to Unlock (and Play) Hidden Chess Game Inside Facebook Messenger
February 05, 2016Unknown
What can you do with Facebook Messenger? Chat with your friends Send GIFs, stickers, and photos Make video calls Send people money in Messenger Have you ever wondered to Play a game while you chat with friends? Yes, it is possible. Facebook had made it to the reality by building a hidden built-in functionality in Facebook Messenger that lets you play Chess with your friends without having to install a third-party app. It just takes one simple step to unlock this hidden game. All you need to do is: type " @fbchess play " and hit Enter, during a conversation, and a small square box would appear in the chat box. Here's how to play: The person who initiated the game would be assigned "White" side, to make the first movement. Although there is some standard algebraic notation like:- B for "Bishop" R for "Rook" Q for "Queen" K for "King" N for "Knight" P for "Pawn" Pawns could be moved by issuing the simple commands

WhatsApp to Share your Personal Data With Facebook

WhatsApp to Share your Personal Data With Facebook
January 29, 2016Wang Wei
Recently the Facebook-owned messaging app dropped its $1 annual subscription fee to make WhatsApp Free for Lifetime . Now, WhatsApp has plans to introduce a new feature that would allow its users to integrate their Facebook accounts with the most widely used messaging app. So far, the social media giant has been focusing on its own messaging platform, Messenger and both WhatsApp and Facebook have been working separately in terms of adding new features. WhatsApp to Share User Data With Facebook Android developer Javier Santos spotted a new feature in the latest beta build of WhatsApp, which indicates that soon you'll start seeing some features interconnected between WhatsApp and Facebook. The feature (optional, for now), dubbed " Share my account info ," when selected will share your personal WhatsApp account information with Facebook in order "to improve your Facebook experience," according to the description. Although it's uncle

Facebook will Let You Send Self-Destructing Messages with Messenger App

Facebook will Let You Send Self-Destructing Messages with Messenger App
November 13, 2015Swati Khandelwal
Facebook is planning to offer you the popular Snapchat feature in its Messenger app – ' Self-Destructing' Messages . Yes, Facebook is testing a new feature within its Messenger app that will allow its users to send self-destructing messages. Some Facebook users in France have spotted this new feature in the Messenger app that lets them send messages that only last for an hour. How to Turn ON the Feature? Users can turn on the self-destructing message feature within Messenger through an hourglass icon on the top-right corner of the conversation. The icon, when tapped, sets the messages to self-destruct after an hour of sending it. Tapping the hourglass icon again will turn off the feature, with everything going back to normal. Here's what Facebook says about the feature: "We're excited to announce the latest in an engaging line of optional product features geared towards making Messenger the best way to communicate with the people that
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