Search Engine Marketing Blog: UDID What???

What is a UDID? No it's not something funky or a four letter short-hand acronym for use on Twitter or your favorite social networks. UDID stands for "Unique Device IDentifier" which is a 40-character, unique set of numbers and letters identifying your iPhone hardware. Apple has set up standards to ensure that the UDID usage doesn't violate user privacy.
Ah ha, but not everyone works ethically and so it appears from a study conducted by a researcher from Bucknell University where he found that private user data may be transmitted along with the UDID.

The study found that of the 57 top Apple Apps, almost 70 percent of the apps sent out the UDID and many apps dropped cookies on the phone that don't expire for years. This means that even old discarded phones can be linked to using the UDID information.

Unfortunately the UDID cannot be switched off so beware users, your phone is watching you and if your UDID is being transmitted to third party servers, who knows what else is being transmitted with it?


Search Engine Marketing Blog: Twitter Promoted Accounts Functionality

So on Twitter today, a new feature became visible under the "suggestions for you". Some suggested users have the word "Promoted" under their Twitter handle. Voilà, here come "Promoted Accounts", a new advertisement opportunity for Twitter users.

Twitter Promoted Accounts

"Suggestions for you" is a feature which suggests Twitter users whom you may not be currently following and may find "interesting".  Although how they come up with the "interesting" part is a bit of a mystery to me as some people they recommend to me, I'd never want to follow in a million years.

Twitter suggests "Promoted Accounts" based on who you follow and surmising from that list, who you may tend to follow. Twitter will recommend a promoted account if you are following other profiles that are similar but not following the user they want to promote. So if you are following many twitter users who are in Metro Detroit, you are sure to see a "Promoted Account" suggestion for another Metro Detroiter. Recommended accounts are recommended based on relevance, or so they say.

I didn't see any information about how the average Joe Smoe business owner can leverage the "Promoted Accounts" feature to promote themselves. Right now it seems only big dogs err brands get that privilege.

Perhaps Biz Stone will share that someday soon?

Search Engine Marketing Blog: Protect yourself from Hackers on Facebook

Have you recently logged into Facebook and found yourself requiring to verify information before accessing your Facebook page? I have and so have several of my colleagues and friends. It appears that Facebook is trying new ways to improve their security measures to help prevent hacking and scams against its users.

If you log into your account from a different location than usual, you are almost sure to receive a "verify your account information" request.

It's so easy to get yourself exposed to hackers. One click on the wrong link and you've just compromised your account to hackers who are just waiting for your slip. People fall for simple tricks like a post on the wall or an email that says "saw you on this video" or "lol, look at your photo". The link takes you to a hacking website and from that point on, its all downhill. In most cases, it's better to copy and paste a link into your browser window rather than clicking on it.

Prevention is always better than cure so change your password often and make it hard for others to "figure out". Never use birthdays, kids names, or general words that are common and easy to decipher. Hackers run routine scripts to break passwords and by using passwords like the word "password" or "food1" or something that simple you are making it easy for them to access your information. Try to create a password that includes a capital letter, lower case letters, numbers and special characters.
Finally, be careful whom you add as a friend. Do you even know this person or anything about him or her? Just because they sent a request, doesn't mean you need to add them. "Ignore" is just as easy an option to choose as "accept"!

Search Engine Marketing Blog: LinkedIn Email Attack

So I received several emails with the message "messages waiting in your inbox" supposedly from LinkedIn about my connections and contacts. I deleted them automatically knowing that they made no sense cause if someone were to write to me, I'd get notified anyway. Come to find out, LinkedIn was the latest to be targeted for an email attack just like Facebook and Twiter in recent weeks.

This attack was so huge that apparently one quarter of all spam email sent out last week was directed towards Linkedin users. Basically it looked like an invitation from someone looking to connect  and if the link is clicked on, the user is taken to a web page where a trojan horse program gets downloaded and embedded into the user's browser. The purpose of the trojan program is to capture all keystrokes to hijack personal information such as online banking information, passwords to other sites, etc.

Best thing to do is AVOID curiosity and delete anything that looks suspicious. You know that if there was a message waiting for you on Linkedin, you can just as easily log into LinkedIn and read it. Remember, never click on a link that you don't recognize, rather go to the site in question by typing its url in the browser window and thus protect yourself from going to a hacker's website.

Search Engine Marketing Blog: Productivity Away from Office With Desktop Connect Mobile App

Working remotely or traveling a lot and hate the fact that you can't get access to the files you need? Well, check out the ipad app known as Desktop Connect. Desktop Connect allows you to access files when you are out of the office and works on  Windows, Mac and Linux.

The initial set-up allows you to replicate the host computer on the ipad by connecting to it via a Virtual Network Computing software. By lowering the resolution on the ipad, the entire desktop fits the ipad screen. You can't download the files, you can only view and save as a screenshot.

Desktop Connect uses password protection and 128-bit encryption to ensure data is safe and costs only $14.99.

Search Engine Marketing Blog: AVG Protection for Social Media Websites too!

Hacking is real and lots of companies claim to offer real-time analysis and detection.

I read about AVG who has come out with a solution called "LinkScanner" which is a real-time scanning solution.  Basically, LinkScanner checks websites and shows you whether or not the sites you are visiting are safe or not. Whether you are surfing the web or shopping online or networking online various social networks, LinkScanner tells you whether those places are safe for you to provide your personal or private information to them.  You get real-time check and the protection is automatically activated for your safety.

It is available for PC and Mac.