Signal is drama-free for now, but it should prepare for the worst

Technology journalist Casey Newton has a worrying revelation in the latest issue of his Platformer newsletter: amidst rapid growth, Signal is reportedly not ready for all the ways it could be misused. The messaging app presently runs as a non-profit, and is funded by donations from users and a $50 million loan from WhatsApp co-founder Brian Acton. Between its lack of vested business interests, its promise of end-to-end encryption via the open-source Signal protocol, and Read more…

The future of US government vehicles is electric

US President Joe Biden has vowed to replace the nation’s government vehicles with an American-made electrically powered fleet, CNBC reports. The commitment came as part of the “Buy American” executive order, which is designed, as its name suggests, to stimulate government procurement of US-made products. America’s switch to electric vehicles won’t happen overnight though. It’ll also be quite expensive and challenging because there isn’t a huge amount of choice when it comes to US-made EVs. Read more…

The original Celeste now has a sequel you can play in your browser

Celeste was one of the most acclaimed games of 2018, but what you may not have known is that the tightly designed platformer was an expanded version of a smaller project developed in four days at a game jam. Maddy Thorson and Noel Berry created the original Celeste for the Pico-8 platform, and now that version has a sequel called Celeste 2: Lani’s Trek. The developers, now including composer Lena Raine, say that this game Read more…

Facebook users’ phone numbers are for sale through a Telegram bot

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge Someone has gotten their hands on a database full of Facebook users’ phone numbers, and is now selling that data using a Telegram bot, according to a report by Motherboard. The security researcher who found this vulnerability, Alon Gal, says that the person who runs the bot claims to have the information of 533 million users, which came from a Facebook vulnerability that was patched in 2019. With Read more…

Grindr fined $11.7 million for illegally sharing private user information with advertisers

Grindr will be fined 100 million Norwegian kroner, or about $11.7 million, by the Norwegian Data Protection Authority for illegally sharing private information about Grindr users to advertisers, according to The New York Times. Last January, the Norwegian Consumer Council filed three complaints against Grindr for sharing personal information, including users’ locations and information about the device they were using, with advertisers. (One of those advertisers was MoPub, Twitter’s mobile ads company.) Associating that information Read more…

Rejoice! Amazon’s new app logo isn’t another icon in a white box

Image: Apple’s App Store It looks like Amazon is rolling a new app icon on iOS, and unlike countless other recent app redesigns, it isn’t just a logo dropped inside a white background! Rejoice! The new icon cleverly takes cues from perhaps Amazon’s most recognizable “product” — its shipping boxes and their bright blue tape. Here it is — in the app’s listing on Apple’s UK App Store. (There are a few other reports of Read more…

Birdwatch is Twitter’s new community-based fact checker

Twitter has tried a variety of fact-checking measures in the past few years, but these normally only apply to tweets from prominent accounts or popular topics. Now the company wants to add context and labels to more tweets by implementing a community-driven fact-checking system called Birdwatch. To start, a group of contributors will be able to “respond quickly when misleading information spreads, adding context that people trust and find valuable.” Currently, this context will be Read more…

Amnesty International calls for a ban on facial recognition in New York City

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge Amnesty International has launched a new campaign against facial recognition titled Ban The Scan — and is launching with a demand for New York City to halt police and government use of the technology. Amnesty argues facial recognition is incompatible with basic privacy rights, and will exacerbate structural racism in policing tactics. “New Yorkers should be able to go out about their daily lives without being tracked by Read more…

Facebook’s News tab comes to UK in first launch outside of the US

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge Facebook’s News tab will go live in the UK on January 26th in its first launch outside the US. The company says the section will offer a mix of curated and personalized news stories, but for select publishers the bigger news is that it will see Facebook paying them to license their content. Although Facebook declined to give information on the amount it expects to pay publishers, a Read more…

Facebook’s News tab arrives in the UK

Facebook is bringing its dedicated News tab to the UK on Tuesday, which marks the first time the company has rolled out the feature outside of the US. You can access the News tab from the menu in the Facebook app.It features news tailored to your int…