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EU criticizes X over levels of disinformation found on platform

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EU criticizes X over levels of disinformation found on platform

European Union regulators have reprimanded Elon Musk after X, the platform formerly known as Twitter, was found to contain a higher ratio of misinformation and disinformation in a new report. “X, formerly Twitter … is the platform with the largest ratio of mis/disinformation followed by Facebook,” the European commissioner for values and transparency, Věra Jourová, said in comments reported by The Guardian

The comments coincided with the publication of a new series of reports as part of the EU’s Code of Practice on Disinformation. These included a third-party analysis from TrustLab, which says that discoverability of posts containing misinformation and disinformation was highest on X, meaning that for a given search containing “disinformation keywords” a higher proportion of results contained misinformation and disinformation. TrustLab’s report, which covers disinformation across EU member states Poland Slovakia, and Spain, also says the proportion of disinformation actors was highest on X.

Chat’s from TrustLab’s report showing the levels of disinformation found across major platforms.
Image: TrustLab

In terms of engagement, TrustLab’s report says misinformation and disinfomation content was engaged with more on X, on average, versus non-mis/disinformation content, resulting in the highest relative engagement out of the platforms analyzed. But in absolute terms, engagement with misinformation and disinformation content on X was lower than TikTok, YouTube, and Facebook.

X, then known as Twitter, signed up to comply with the voluntary rulebook last year alongside the likes of Meta, Microsoft, and Google, but withdrew from the agreement in May 2023. As such, while it’s been included in TrustLab’s third-party report, X hasn’t self-reported data alongside other major tech firms. X was previously criticized by the EU prior to formally leaving the code of practice, which said that its initial report from earlier this year was “short of data, with no information on commitments to empower the fact-checking community.”

“Mr Musk knows he is not off the hook by leaving the code of practice”

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Although the code of practice is voluntary for now, it’s seen as a precursor to the EU’s new Digital Services Act, which came into force in August and which Twitter and other designated Very Large Online Platforms will have to fully comply with early next year. “The new Code of Practice will be backed up by the DSA — including for heavy dissuasive sanctions,” the EU’s commissioner for the internal market, Thierry Breton, said in a statement when the code was announced last year. “Very large platforms that repeatedly break the Code and do not carry out risk mitigation measures properly risk fines of up to 6% of their global turnover.”

“Mr Musk knows he is not off the hook by leaving the code of practice,” said Jourová, per The Guardian. “There are obligations under the hard law. So my message for Twitter/X is you have to comply. We will be watching what you do.” 

Away from X, the self-reported data shines light on the scale of the tech giant’s efforts to fight disinformation across their platforms. Google, for example, says it rejected over 140,000 political ads in the EU “for failing the identity verification process,” while Microsoft said it restricted or blocked the creation of 6.7 million fake LinkedIn accounts in the EU in the first half of this year. TikTok says it removed over 140,000 videos for infringing its misinformation policy, while Meta applied fact checking labels to over 40 million pieces of content across Facebook and Instagram. 

The EU’s press release specifically calls out efforts to stop the spread of misinformation about Russia’s war in Ukraine. Google reports that it has removed 411 YouTube channels linked to Russia’s state-backed Internet Research Agency, while TikTok took down 211 videos after fact-checking them. “The Russian state has engaged in the war of ideas to pollute our information space with half truth and lies to create a false image that democracy is no better than autocracy,” warned the EU’s Jourová.

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Google reveals the Pixel 9 Pro Fold before it can leak again

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Google reveals the Pixel 9 Pro Fold before it can leak again

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After showing an early look at the Pixel 9 Pro, Google has taken the wraps off the Pixel 9 Pro Fold, too.

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How to securely lock your iPhone, iPad from prying eyes

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How to securely lock your iPhone, iPad from prying eyes

Keeping your personal information safe is more important than ever. Your iPhone and iPad contain a wealth of sensitive data, from personal photos to financial information. This guide will walk you through the process of securing your Apple devices from prying eyes.

GET SECURITY ALERTS, EXPERT TIPS – SIGN UP FOR KURT’S NEWSLETTER – THE CYBERGUY REPORT HERE

iPad and iPhone on table (Kurt “CyberGuy” Knutsson)

Setting a strong passcode

The first line of defense for your device is a strong passcode. Here’s how to set one up:

  • Open Settings by tapping on the Settings icon on your home screen
  • Scroll down and select Face ID & Passcode (or Touch ID & Passcode for older models)
  • Enter your current passcode, if prompted
How to securely lock your iPhone, iPad from prying eyes

Steps to set a strong passcode on iPhone (Kurt “CyberGuy” Knutsson)

  • If you don’t have a passcode set, tap Turn Passcode On
How to securely lock your iPhone, iPad from prying eyes

Steps to set a strong passcode on iPhone (Kurt “CyberGuy” Knutsson)

  • If you do have a passcode set, tap Change Passcode
  • Enter your current passcode, if prompted
  • Enter a new passcode that is difficult to guess; avoid simple sequences, repeated numbers or birthdays
  • For maximum security, use a combination of numbers, letters and special characters
  • You’ll then be asked to verify your new passcode by reentering it.
How to securely lock your iPhone, iPad from prying eyes

Steps to set a strong passcode on iPhone (Kurt “CyberGuy” Knutsson)

HOW TO PROTECT YOUR IPHONE & IPAD FROM MALWARE

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Enabling biometric security

For an additional layer of security, enable biometric authentication, if your device supports it:

  • Go to Settings on your iPhone
  • Tap Face ID & Passcode or Touch ID & Passcode
  • Enter your passcode when prompted.
  • Tap Set Up Face ID or Set Up Touch ID
How to securely lock your iPhone, iPad from prying eyes

Steps to enable biometric security (Kurt “CyberGuy” Knutsson)

  • Tap where it says Get Started to begin the enrollment process
  • Then follow the on-screen instructions to enroll your face or fingerprint
  • For Face ID: Position your face within the frame and move your head slowly to complete the circle. Follow the prompts to complete the first scan, then repeat for the second scan.
  • For Touch ID: Place your finger on the Home button and lift it repeatedly as instructed. Adjust your grip to capture the edges of your fingerprint.
  • Once the process is complete, tap Done
  • Lastly, ensure the toggle for iPhone Unlock is turned on to use Face ID or Touch ID for unlocking your device
How to securely lock your iPhone, iPad from prying eyes

Steps to enable biometric security (Kurt “CyberGuy” Knutsson)

TOP IPHONE CASES OF 2024

5 additional security measures

To further protect your iPhone and iPad, follow these additional security measures.

1) Make sure to use a password manager to keep track of all your passwords. It will also help you generate and store complex passwords. 

2) Use two-factor authentication (2FA) as an extra shield to prevent hackers from getting into your accounts. 

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3) Keep your operating system and all software up to date to protect against security threats.

4) Regularly backup your data in case you need to restore it in the future.

5) Have strong antivirus software. The best way to protect yourself from clicking malicious links that install malware that may get access to your private information is to have antivirus protection installed on all your devices. This can also alert you of any phishing emails or ransomware scams. Get my picks for the best 2024 antivirus protection winners for your Windows, Mac, Android and iOS devices.

HOW TO REMOVE YOUR PRIVATE DATA FROM THE INTERNET

Kurt’s key takeaways 

Securing your iPhone and iPad is a crucial step in protecting your personal information. By following these steps to set a strong passcode and enable biometric security, you’ve significantly increased the security of your device. Remember that security is an ongoing process, so regularly updating your software and backing up your data are essential practices to maintain the safety of your digital life. Stay vigilant and keep your devices locked away from prying eyes.

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What additional steps do you take to secure your mobile devices, and have you ever experienced a situation where these security measures proved crucial? Let us know by writing us at Cyberguy.com/Contact.

For more of my tech tips and security alerts, subscribe to my free CyberGuy Report Newsletter by heading to Cyberguy.com/Newsletter.

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Splitgate’s portal-hopping sequel announced for 2025

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Splitgate’s portal-hopping sequel announced for 2025

Splitgate isn’t dead yet. On Thursday, developer 1047 Games revealed a cinematic trailer for Splitgate 2, a revamped version of the free-to-play multiplayer shooter, which uses the same portal mechanic that made the game so fun the first time around.

When Splitgate 2 launches in 2025, it will come with some notable upgrades. The developers say they’ve “rebuilt everything from the ground up” in Unreal Engine 5 and also added a new faction-based system. “There will be familiar elements, but on the whole, Splitgate 2 should look and feel completely fresh from the original,” 1047 Games says.

While the Splitgate 2 trailer doesn’t feature actual gameplay, it does give us a peek at the Splitgate world 1047 Games is focused on building. There’s a new mobile companion app you can download on Android and iOS that has free comics, rewards, and other features. I have to admit, I didn’t expect much from a sequel after the end of the first Splitgate — but the new focus on lore has me looking forward to getting back into the game.

The Splitgate sequel will remain free to play and will be available on Xbox, PlayStation, and PC. 1047 Games says it will have more details to share about the game in August.

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