Tag Archives: data backup

Back up your Facebook – or risk losing everything

Imagine you go to log into Facebook one day and your account, well, just isn’t there anymore. Scary, right?

Well that was the reality for US journalist Jeff Bercovici when a hacker took over an old email address of his that was associated with the account, and proceeded to change every single thing about it, including deleting nine years’ worth of his Facebook activity.

No red flags, no second chances, everything gone. Not worth thinking about, is it?

You can read the full story here – he is clear that a lot of the blame lies with him, in not having two-factor authentification enabled for his account, and for using an old email address that was in fact so ancient, and so unused, that it had been released back into circulation.

But, those key facts aside, just how easily the hacker was able to change everything about Jeff’s account once he was inside makes for chilling reading. Everything that made the account personal – its name, the profile picture, other pictures, posts and comments – were all either changed or deleted.

Seemingly with no comeback, without raising any security flags for unusual behaviour and with no chance to undo and get them back.

Now, because Jeff is an influential tech journalist based in San Francisco with over 7,000 Twitter followers, this is where his story starts to diverge from the usual user experience, something he acknowledges in his article.

A few phone calls and some insider assistance later, and his account has been fully restored. But, as was clear from the initial customer service response above, Facebook considers that once data has been deleted for any reason, as far as they are concerned it is gone for good.

So, how can you stop this happening to you? While this hacker wanted Jeff’s verified user status for himself, there’s nothing to stop people breaking into any account and taking it over, so what can you do to protect yourself?

Of course, taking all available security measures is a key one, so make sure you have enabled Facebook’s Login Approvals, which texts you a code if you access Facebook from an unrecognised device – ie one that hasn’t been used to log into your account before – and needs that code imputed before you can continue.

But the single most important thing you can do is back up your account. If the key details, such as your contacts, posts and pictures are saved, then anything happening to your account will not be such a disaster, right?

And how can you do that? With digi.me of course  – you can connect your personal accounts, as well as pages, to our app and run regular syncs so that the most important information you are sharing with your Facebook friends is backed up and so can’t be lost.

Check it out here – it’s free to download and use, and you get premium features including universal search, flashback and export ability free for a month as well!

Having your data – or at least a copy of the most important parts – in a place that you own and control (in this case the digi.me library on your computer) is the single most effective thing you can do to make sure that your data stays where it belongs- with you.

And why wouldn’t you want to do that?

Why digi.me knows that Exporting is GREAT!

As the Government launches its Exporting is GREAT campaign to encourage 100,000 new UK exporters into the market by 2020, our founder Julian Ranger explains why having access to a worldwide market has been great for digi.me

Physical exports have been a way of life for centuries – the trading of things that one country didn’t have with another one that did, but these days digital exports are growing in popularity and digi.me is in the vanguard.

Here at digi.me, our ground-breaking app is helping thousands of people take back control of their personal information – but why should that be restricted to the UK?

We have an international team and believe firmly that our product has merit around the world – and our current stats, which show we export both physically and digitally to over 150 countries, with our app content localised in 11 languages, bear this out.

Of course, shipping overseas in any form has its challenges, but we’ve had (and continue to have) a lot of support from UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) and are getting a lot of help from a European embassy overseas at the moment for an ambitious country-wide project we’re hoping to run there.

Clearly, there are some obvious ground rules to follow – you need to be clear on what your product or service brings to your target market, and what marks you out from your competitors. Do your research on what an individual country needs, and then go from there.

My previous experience of selling to the US Air Force and US Navy gave me confidence to know that anything is possible, and we started exporting with digi.me digitally immediately from set-up, with direct exports to France and the US following afterwards.

Now Toshiba has joined forces with us to distribute our market-leading personal data software across Europe, North and Latin America, which sees them partnering and promoting us through their marketing and social media channels, as well as pre-installing our app in a number of laptops and tablets in the Latin America marketplace. We’re also in our third year with the FNAC security pack in France, so are becoming well known over there as well.

As for our future exporting plans, we hope to be able to announce that European project soon, as well as open a US office, with US locals, to explore possibilities for digi.me there.

So our advice to anyone wavering about joining the international market would be to get out there and do it – you really won’t regret it.

*Exporting is GREAT will run for five years and provide advice and expertise to support businesses at every step of the way, from initial interest to market. This will include the year-long EIG Roadshow that will travel the length and breadth of the country, reinforcing the campaign’s core messages, giving face-to-face assistance to first-time exporters and using the latest technology to connect these businesses with live export opportunities. Online help will be available via www.exportingisgreat.gov.uk

Ten ways to keep your personal data safe online

The price of using websites and other online services is often giving away personal information about ourselves, but there are some quick and easy steps that we can all take to make that data as safe as possible.

The online world is often a strange one – we quite happily give information away to strangers that we would never dream of doing face to face, in the false belief it is what everyone is doing so must be safe.

And, while to a large degree it is, we do still need to take care, particularly not to give away unnecessary information that could be used for identify theft or just plain fraud.

So what should we be doing – and what must be avoided?

  1. Be clear who can see what – that means enabling, and checking, privacy settings for every social media site you use, and ensuring you only make payments through secured web pages when shopping or banking online.
  2. Have strong passwords – and don’t reuse them or write them down. We know this one is tricky. Great passwords, in terms of strength, are by their nature hard to recall, while easy-to-remember ones are not. But be savvy, because account security is everything – and enable two-stage authentication where you can, so you can get back into your account with minimal effort and fuss if you are hacked.
  3. Take care not to post information that is often used as security questions for internet banking services, such as your data of birth, mother’s maiden name or first pet. The more would-be fraudsters know about you, the easier it is to find, or convince someone to give them, the rest.
  4. Don’t fall for dodgy or so-called phishing emails – your bank, or other outlets that have card details, won’t ask for sensitive details over email, so beware any emails that do, no matter how official looking. If in doubt, call the institution on a number that you know is real.
  5. Be careful where you log-on – take care to disconnect from a session if using public computers in libraries, for example, and beware public wifi as its often not as secure as a home connection.
  6. On which note – make sure your home wifi is password-protected, so others can’t access it – both to try and get your details or piggyback on your data allowance.
  7. Keep spyware and virus scanners up to date on any device that you use to access the internet – viruses and keystroke loggers are both a big risk to your data
  8. Be wary about who you befriend online, and who you give personal information such as your address out to
  9. Beware what pictures and status updates tell a potential criminal about you – holiday pictures show you’re away from home, for example.
  10. Be sensible and always have your wits about you – only give out the information that is needed by any one site, don’t take risks with your personal information, or your safety, and if something feels wrong take heed and get yourself out of the situation.

The internet is a wonderful thing for so many reasons, but treat it with the respect it deserves and you’ll be able to just enjoy it and not fear it.

Welcome, Sophie, to a world of happy memories you can enjoy forever

We’ve welcomed a new addition to the digi.me family recently, and it’s given us a reminder of the pleasure of making memories.

Little Sophie was born weighing 8lbs 8oz and, along with her mum, is doing well. Her proud parents have, of course, been taking lots of pictures of her, and as a family they are already making happy memories that they will want to keep and treasure forever.

That’s not been the only new arrival for us recently, as another of our staff had a baby boy, Edison, at the end of August and we released the latest version of our app (our biggest and ongoing baby!) earlier this month.

Making and sharing happy memories on our social media accounts is something most of us take for granted these days, but increasingly there is demand to keep our own physical back-ups of our happiest times as well, so we have somewhere to access them if a network crashes, a camera containing precious photos gives up the ghost, or the platform where we have posted them to share proudly with the world loses them or ceases to function.

It is when we are having our best times that the issue of keeping those memories safe forever should be at the forefront of our minds. Nothing lasts indefinitely, so having a copy of all our precious memories so that they are able to just makes sense.

With digi.me, you are now able to add your own memories and pictures manually, as well as back up pictures and statuses you have posted to a wide variety of social media accounts, so it really can be a full and true picture of who you are and what is important to you.

Don’t leave the continued presence of your most precious memories and pictures to chance, ensure their ongoing survival – and your ongoing ability to reminisce and remind yourself of favourite times now and in the future – by downloading our app and adding your life to it.

And to Sophie, digi.me’s youngest memory maker, we wish years of happy and memorable experiences, that she too in time will be able to look back on with our app and enjoy all over again.

Digital dependence is ‘eroding our memories’

Excessive reliance on the internet and search engines for fact finding is damaging our long-term memories as well as compromising IT security, a new study has found.

Fuelled by an increasingly connected world that is always online, we no longer hold in our minds information we can store and retrieve from a digital device or the Internet, causing what the report has termed Digital Amnesia.

Crucially, it found that one of the far-reaching consequences of a failure to make use of our existing stored memories – for example by preferring to search online – can ultimately result in their dilution or disappearance.

The study, which involved 6,000 consumers aged 16 and up from across Europe, found that when faced with a question, over a third will head straight to the internet for an answer, rising to 40 per cent of those aged 45 and over.

Amost a quarter (24 per cent) of respondents admit they would forget the online answer as soon as they had used it, rising to 27 per cent of those aged 45 and over, with 12 per cent assuming the information will always be out there somewhere.

Dr Maria Wimber, a pyschology lecturer at the University of Birmingham, said that the trend of looking up information  “prevents the build-up of long-term memories”.

She added: “Our brain appears to strengthen a memory each time we recall it, and at the same time forget irrelevant memories that are distracting us.

“Past research has repeatedly demonstrated that actively recalling information is a very efficient way to create a permanent memory.”

The report’s finding that many people rely on computers instead of memorising information was highlighted by the fact that many of those questioned could still recall their own phone numbers from childhood, but did not know the current numbers of family members or their place of work.

The report also found that IT security can be an early casualty of our impatience to access information online. Kaspersky Lab, the cybersecurity firm which carried out this study, has found that just under a fifth (18 per cent) of consumers – 22 per cent of those aged up to 24 – will opt for speed over protection when downloading files.

This leaves the door wide open for malicious software intent on stealing personal data and compromising the device and any other devices connected to it.

If consumers haven’t protected their data, their online accounts and devices with strong passwords and data back-ups, the memories and information these hold could be lost or damaged forever.

Of course, digi.me users can protect their data (if not their actual memories!) as regular back-ups will ensure that all their social media history remains in their digi.me app on their desktop, safe, secure and always available.

Facebook Privacy Basics

Facebook Terms & Policy Update – What does it mean for your data?

If you have a Facebook account you may have noticed a little icon pop up in the top right of your account making you aware about the latest Facebook terms and policy changes.  Most people tend to ignore these small changes but it is always worth noting how recent changes affect who owns your data.

The latest changes on Facebook attempt to make it clearer who has access to your data and how.  The big changes are mainly in the area of tracking data on your mobile device.  So if you are a mobile user your usage statistics including GPS data will now be stored against your Facebook account.  Also included in this recent update is a log of websites you have visited whilst you are logged into Facebook.  This information is collected and used to help advertisers target advertisements that are more relevant to your interests.  Whilst this information has been collected in the past it hasn’t been as clear what it was being used for.

If you don’t want Facebook to know where you have been and when, the advice online is to use the web version of Facebook rather than the Facebook app.  This way you keep your location data private when you are out and about.

What can we do to help you manage your data?

SocialSafe which is transitioning to Digi.Me can help you manage and store your social media content including your Facebook data. At the end of the day your data belongs to you and as such we provide you with the tools to take a copy of your data from Facebook (along with many other data sources) and store it locally so that you have your data on your computer. This means that if there is an outage on Facebook or you decide that you no longer wish to use a social media provider you can download a copy of your data including your images and status updates.  You no longer have to lose those all important moments that you once shared with friends, family and colleagues.  Give SocialSafe a try today by clicking on the link below. It’s free and puts you in control of your data! (Plus there is so much more you can do with your data when you have it all to yourself!)

Try SocialSafe

How To Challenge Your Friends To An Instagram Popularity Contest

We all appreciate it when our friends ‘like’ our content on social networks. Whether it’s a status update we’ve posted or a photo, it’s always nice to get that social seal of approval on something you’ve created. However, what can be just as much fun is getting more likes than your friends when you post things!

Instagram users have been known for their competitive nature when it comes to how many likes or comments their photos get once posted to the photo sharing network. Well, with SocialSafe you can take this battle with your friends to the next level, by not only seeing which of your own photos is the most popular, but also by seeing which is the most popular photo for each Instagram filter.

View your most popular content

Once you’ve backed up your Instagram account with SocialSafe, you can use the general Insights to see which of your photos has the most likes and comments, and with the specific Instagram Insights you can learn more about your use of individual filters and how popular they are with your followers:

most instagram likes

Most popular image for each Instagram filter

With SocialSafe it’s easy to see which photo has the most likes and comments, and once you know how many your most popular image has, you can challenge your friends to see how many interactions their most popular image has! You can even set your own date ranges, so you could see what your most popular photos were each month, and then compare that information with your friends to see who gained the most likes for each time period!

Of course they’ll need to be using SocialSafe in order to see which Instagram photo is the most popular, but the application is free to use, so simply download SocialSafe and compare the number of likes with your friends!

Facebook Outages – Can You Access Your Content In An Emergency?

At the end of last week some Facebook users were unable to log in to the social network, instead encountering the following error message:

facebook down

It didn’t appear to be a complete outage, as the issue only affected some users. However, as Facebook is increasingly used as an online ID to log in to more and more sites and services, any Facebook downtime can have further reaching effects than simply not allowing you to access the social network itself:

[tweet https://twitter.com/joedawsonnn/statuses/464916690716065792 align=’center’]

According to a spokesperson, the outage is now fixed, and a message on Facebook’s Platform Status page confirms that the sitewide issues were resolved in the early hours of Saturday morning.

While a minor outage only affecting some users, it does go to show that even without the malevolent interference of hackers, there is always a risk that you could be separated from your data if you entrust all of it to someone else to look after for you.

It’s easy to forget how much important information can be held on social networks – just think about all of the addresses, timings and other details that we take for granted as being available 24/7. The only way to be sure that you’re doing all you can to ensure you are able to search for something said on or contained on your social networks is to keep your own copy of your data.

At SocialSafe we believe that you should be the single biggest owner of your data, so if you want to download your Facebook Messages, back up your tweets, download your tagged photos and more, start your very own SocialSafe library now for free.

If You Liked Facebook’s ‘Look Back’ Feature, You’ll Love SocialSafe Insights

Today Facebook is celebrating its 10th birthday (wow, doesn’t time fly?!), and many users will have seen ‘A Look Back’, which is a short video displaying some of the highlights from your time on Facebook. It’s pretty cool, showing you when you first joined (along with your first profile picture), some of your earlier photos and posts, as well as a couple of your updates that have received the most likes.

It’s a nice trip down memory lane, but surely the last seven years of my Facebook activity can’t be done justice in one minute seven seconds? And what of the supplementary content? Who were the 30 people who liked that picture Facebook showed me a glimpse of in the video? What were all those comments on that particular update that made it stick out from the thousands of others over the years?

If Facebook’s Look Back feature has today stirred in you a nostalgic inclination to relive some of your social media highlights, then the Insights within SocialSafe will allow you to really roll your sleeves up and delve deep into your historic content. Among other things, you can see your Most Popular Photos and Most Popular Updates, as well as expanding the view to see the comments and people who liked your items:

View your most popular photos with SocialSafe Insights Use SocialSafe Insights to see your most popular updates

You can look at the highlights from your entire history, use the preset time periods within the calendar or simply set your own date range to discover which photos and posts were the most popular for each given period. Not only that, but you can also view Insights across all of the network accounts you have backed up within SocialSafe, or selectively choose which accounts or networks to consider for Insights each time you want to use it.

If you want to see what memories are lurking beneath the surface of your social media profiles, then download SocialSafe for free and look at Insights once you have backed up your content. (A quick word on privacy for any new/potential users – anything you choose to back up with SocialSafe is stored on your own machine, and you are the sole owner and keeper of that data – we never see nor store any of your content).

So happy birthday again to Facebook, and we hope that you all enjoy looking back on your content as much as you’ve enjoyed creating it!

Pinterest Down For Some Users – How To Access Your Pins Offline

Users of Pinterest have been reporting trouble accessing the site over the weekend. As is becoming the norm when a service is experiencing difficulties, users turn to Twitter to vent their frustrations:

[tweet https://twitter.com/sorandom/statuses/374170980194611200 align=’center’]

Eventually Pinterest admitted that it had been encountering problems with its service by posting to the Pinterest Facebook Page:

You might have had some trouble using Pinterest lately, and we’ve been working hard to get everything back to normal… Sorry for the weekend hiccups, and thanks for bearing with us!

While it is still unclear what caused the problems, tweets from users indicate that Pinterest was inaccessible on both PC and mobile devices.

Of course, people use Pinterest – and social networks in general – for a variety of different purposes, and many of those are business uses. Being unable to access information when you need it can have severe consequences, so it’s wise to have a local copy of your content.

SocialSafe allows you to download your Pinterest Pins, comments and photos to your own machine, giving you a searchable journal containing your social network content. Other supported networks include Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+ and LinkedIn, so by backing up all this content in one place on your own machine, you really do get your whole story.