Facebook Messenger’s money transfer tool is heading to the UK

Back in 2015, Facebook introduced the ability to send money to friends through Messenger and now it has brought that capability to UK users. It’s the first time Facebook has launched the feature outside of the US.

A number of companies have begun working peer-to-peer payment abilities into their services. Skype lets users in nearly two dozen countries send cash within its mobile app via PayPal and PayPal has a bot that let’s you send money within Slack. In May, the encrypted messaging app Telegram began supporting payments through chatbots, as did Facebook last year. Facebook Messenger also lets you send payments through PayPal and introduced a group payment option earlier this year. Apple is also in on the money transfer game, allowing iPhone and iPad users to send money within iMessage via Venmo or by telling Siri to send cash via Square Cash, Monzo or PayPal. Additionally, Apple has its own Venmo-like money transfer service in the works that’s due to be released sometime this fall.

Transfers through Facebook Messenger will work in the UK as they do in the US. Users will need to link a debit card to their account before sending or receiving money. The feature is rolling out to UK users in the next few weeks.

Via: Bloomberg

Engadget RSS Feed

FBI won’t be forced to reveal San Bernardino iPhone hacking tool

The Associated Press, USA Today and Vice News have failed in their attempt to reveal the hacking tool the FBI used to access San Bernardino terrorist Syed Farook’s iPhone. Judge Tanya Chutkan denied their request in a summary judgment ruling issued late on September 30th, arguing that the risks involved in naming the vendor (and thus the tool) or the price paid are too serious to honor a Freedom of Information Act request. It would make the company a target for retaliatory hacks and exploits that it likely couldn’t withstand, Judge Chutkan said, while the price would tell “adversaries” how readily the FBI can use the tool in the future.

She also rejected the argument that former FBI director James Comey’s mention of a “very high” price equated to official disclosure that compelled a wider release. The information had to be more specific than that, according to the ruling. And while Comey noted that the tool was only effective against an iPhone 5c running iOS 9, the FBI could theoretically find a way to expand its usefulness or ask the developer to build a similar implementation. If the vendor is exposed, Judge Chutkan said, this could “hurt the FBI’s future efforts to protect national security.”

This isn’t going to please privacy advocates concerned that the FBI has such power, especially as it might be maintaining this power solely through obscurity — it might get into your phone only because an outside security researcher hasn’t discovered the flaw yet. And is the theoretical future usefulness of the tool a good enough excuse to keep it under wraps? At the same time, it’s hard to ignore the likelihood that any public disclosure would likely invite some kind of retaliation. The judge had to strike a difficult balance, and it’s not necessarily clear that it’s the right balance.

Source: ZDNet, DocumentCloud

Engadget RSS Feed