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Lenders are using social graphs to determine how creditworthy you are. (Getty Images)

Banks now checking your Twitter and Facebook activity to see if you’re worthy of getting a loan

AMERICAblog- by John Aravosis (DC) on 1/22/2010 10:29:00 AM

Please write financially secure comments to this post:

Your social networking chit-chat could have an impact on your credit – specifically on whether banks think you are worthy of a loan.

Creditors are checking out what you post to your Facebook and Twitter accounts. They’re checking out who your friends are and who the people are in your networks.

The presumption is that if your friends are responsible credit cardholders and pay their bills on time, you could be a good credit customer…

How long until health insurance companies do the same?

The banks claim they’re just checking you out for “marketing” purposes, then they admit it’s actually about whether to give you loans or credit:

Pretty much everything you and your network reveal may be compiled, including status updates, “tweets,” joining online clubs, linking a Web site or posting a comment on a blog or news Web site….

Another reason credit issuers are looking to this data is to reduce lending risk. Social graphs allow credit issuers to know if you’re connected to a community of great credit customers. Creditors can see if people in your network have accounts with them, and are free to look at how they are handling those accounts.

The presumption is that if those in your network are responsible cardholders, there is a better chance you will be, too. So, if a bank is on the fence about whether to extend you credit, you may become eligible if those in your network are good credit customers.

“Credit card companies have been stung very hard during this downturn, and they’re going to work that much harder to avoid extending credit to people with a high level of predictable losses,” says Ken Clark, author of “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Boosting Your Financial IQ.” “Social graphs can preemptively cut the amount of charge-offs by not giving high-risk people a card. It may translate into hundreds of millions of dollars industry wide.”

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‘Iranian Cyber Army’ briefly takes Twitter offline world-wide

Raw Story– By Agence France-Presse
Saturday, December 19th, 2009 — 10:43 am

Popular microblogging site Twitter was briefly shut down overnight, its home page replaced with an image claiming the site had been hacked by the “Iranian Cyber Army.”

The website’s official blog acknowledged the disruption but gave no details as to how the site had been disrupted and who was responsible.

“Last night, DNS settings for the Twitter Web site were hijacked,” the site’s co-founder Biz Stone wrote Friday on the blog.

DNS stands for Domain Name System, an Internet protocol used to translate online addresses from long strings of numbers into simple “urls” such as http://www.twitter.com.

Hackers hijacked the settings for Twitter’s website, rerouting about 80 percent of its traffic to another page from shortly before 0600 GMT until 0700 GMT, according to Stone.

MORE HERE

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Chinese censors block Obama’s call to free the Web

By ALEXA OLESEN, Nov 16, 4:36 pm ET

Associated Press

BEIJING – President Barack Obama prodded China about Internet censorship and free speech, but the message was not widely heard in China where his words were blocked online and shown on only one regional television channel.

China has more than 250 million Internet users and employs some of the world’s tightest controls over what they see. The country is often criticized for its so-called “Great Firewall of China” — technology designed to prevent unwanted traffic from entering or leaving a network.

During his town hall meeting in Shanghai on Monday, Obama responded at length to a question about the firewall — remarks that were later played down in the Chinese media and scrubbed from some Chinese Web sites.

“I’m a big supporter of non-censorship,” Obama said. “I recognize that different countries have different traditions. I can tell you that in the United States, the fact that we have free Internet — or unrestricted Internet access — is a source of strength, and I think should be encouraged.”

Obama may have been hoping to set a personal example for China’s leaders when he said he believes that free discussion, including criticism that may be annoying to him, makes him “a better leader because it forces me to hear opinions that I don’t want to hear.”

One prolific blogger who goes by the name of Hecaitou said that a transcript of the exchange posted on the portal Netease was taken down by censors after just 27 minutes. A full Chinese-language transcript of the event was later posted on the official Xinhua News Agency Web site but required four clicks to locate the relevant section.

Only local Shanghai TV carried the event live. It was streamed on two popular Internet portals and on the White House’s Web site, which is not censored, though both the video and audio feeds were choppy and delayed inside China.

The People’s Daily online briefly summarized Obama as telling the crowd that the Internet has “enormous power in assisting information dissemination,” but made no mention of his comments on censorship.

The rest of the story

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Blog meets Twitter!  This is the new Live-Blogging and I hope you like the new format…  :)

Have a wonderful & safe weekend!

Suzie-Q

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James Corbett | The Corbett Report | Tuesday, June 23, 2009

coletoon_-__twitter_5

It’s the 2009 presidential election in Iran and opposition leader Mir-Houssein Mousavi declares victory hours before the polls close, insuring that any result to the contrary will be called into question. Western media goes into overdrive, fighting with each other to see who can offer the most hyperbolic denunciation of the vote and President Ahmadenijad’s apparent victory (BBC wins by publishing bald-faced lies about the supposed popular uprising which it is later forced to retract). On June 13th, 30000 “tweets” begin to flood Twitter with live updates from Iran, most written in English and provided by a handful of newly-registered users with identical profile photos. The Jerusalem Post writes a story about the Iran Twitter phenomenon a few hours after it starts (and who says Mossad isn’t staying up to date with new media?). Now, YouTube is providing a “Breaking News” link at the top of every page linking to the latest footage of the Iranian protests (all shot in high def, no less). Welcome to Destabilization 2.0, the latest version of a program that the western powers have been running for decades in order to overthrow foreign, democratically elected governments that don’t yield to the whims of western governments and multinational corporations.

More…

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