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Zoom Has Acquired Encrypted Messaging Service Keybase as it Continues to Up its Data Security Measures



With millions more people using Zoom amid the COVID-19 lockdowns, the platform is, logically, very keen to capitalize on that increased interest. But data security questions have clouded Zoom’s progress, and forced many to re-think their usage of the app.

That’s prompted Zoom to take quick action, with its latest update on this front seeing it acquire encrypted messaging platform Keybase as it moves to further refine its back-end security systems.

Zoom Keybase

As explained by Zoom:

“Since its launch in 2014, Keybase’s team of exceptional engineers has built a secure messaging and file-sharing service leveraging their deep encryption and security expertise. We are excited to integrate Keybase’s team into the Zoom family to help us build end-to-end encryption that can reach current Zoom scalability.”

The announcement adds to Zoom’s appointment of an information security officer council, the addition of new AES encryption of Zoom data, and changes to its system operating structure to remove data-sharing processes. It’s clear that Zoom wants to snuff out any concerns about potential data-sharing via its app, and overall, looking at its upgrades, it’s certainly far more secure than it was just last month.

Keybase’s team will further add to this, which will change that app’s focus – as explained by Keybase:

Initially, our single top priority is helping to make Zoom even more secure. There are no specific plans for the Keybase app yet. Ultimately Keybase’s future is in Zoom’s hands, and we’ll see where that takes us.”

According to The VergeKeybase co-founder Max Krohn will immediately take on the leadership of Zoom’s security engineering team.

So, should you trust Zoom with your data?


Definitely, Zoom’s doing all the right things, and the acquisition of Keybase is another example of just how seriously the app is taking its obligations in this respect. Adding new levels of expertise, and new layers of protection, significantly changes things for the app – but then again, Google has also recently expanded access to its multi-participant video chat platform ‘Meet’ as well, which will no doubt see many people shifting to Meet in preference to Zoom.  

In its announcement that Meet access would be made free, Google was also very keen to highlight its security measures, a clear dig at Zoom’s stumbles. Google is the much bigger app, with access to much more experience and resources, so you would expect that, on balance, Google Meet would be the more secure option, if this remains a concern.

But again, Zoom is moving in the right direction, and it’s addressing its vulnerabilities fast in order to meet increasing need.



Twitter Launches Election Integrity Features Ahead of US Midterms



Twitter Launches Election Integrity Features Ahead of US Midterms

The US midterms are coming up, and Twitter’s working to get ahead of any potential misuse of its platform to spread misinformation around the candidates, with a range of improved election integrity features, as well as new, curated election info hubs to help boost credible updates.

First off, Twitter’s activating enforcement of its Civic Integrity Policy, giving it more capacity to limit the spread of misleading tweets.

As per Twitter:

The Civic Integrity Policy covers the most common types of harmful misleading information about elections and civic events, such as: claims about how to participate in a civic process like how to vote, misleading content intended to intimidate or dissuade people from participating in the election, and misleading claims intended to undermine public confidence in an election – including false information about the outcome of the election. Tweets with this content may be labeled with links to credible information or helpful context, and Twitter will not recommend or amplify this content in areas of the product where Twitter makes recommendations.”

Twitter launched a new set of tweet labels last November, which include additional notes on why the tweet has been labeled.

Those add-on tags have proven to be effective in limiting the spread of false information, with Twitter reporting its updated label formats increased ‘Find out more’ click-through rates by 17% (meaning more people were clicking labels to read debunking content), while they also led to notable decreases in engagement with labeled Tweets.

Twitter’s also bringing back its prebunks to further limit the spread of misleading reports.

Twitter election prebunks

Prebunks aim to provide context on potentially misleading election trends, limiting false reportage about the same.

“Over the coming months, we’ll place prompts directly on people’s timelines in the US and in Search when people type related terms, phrases, or hashtags.” 

Twitter’s also launching new election info hubs in Explore, with updates curated by Twitter’s team, along with its labels on candidate profiles to make it clear who they are and what position they’re running for.

Twitter election labels

Twitter will also be promoting media literacy tips on @TwitterSafety, to help users educate themselves on ways to avoid misinformation.

Twitter election misinfo

The combination of initiatives should help to limit the spread of misinfo around the polls, and keep Twitter users informed. Which is important, because while Twitter’s audience is only small, in comparison to other social apps, Twitter is the home of real time news and updates, which means that much of the news that’s initially shared on Twitter then gets aggregated to other platforms as a result.

Many of the most passionate, active news followers stay up to date via tweet, and if Twitter can ensure that these people are not receiving incorrect info to begin with, that can actually have a big impact on the broader news ecosystem.

Which is why all of these elements are more important than, on the surface, they may seem.

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