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Telegram’s 30-Engineer Staff Worries Security Experts

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A recent interview clip featuring Telegram founder Pavel Durov has gone viral, sparking concerns among security experts. In the video, Durov highlights his company’s “super efficiency” by stating he’s the sole product manager and employs “about 30 engineers.”

However, experts view this as a red flag. Matthew Green, a cryptography expert from Johns Hopkins University, points to Telegram’s lack of default end-to-end encryption and servers located in the UAE as vulnerabilities. Unlike Signal or WhatsApp, Telegram requires users to manually activate “Secret Chat” for secure communication. Additionally, Telegram’s use of a proprietary encryption algorithm raises doubts about its overall security.

Eva Galperin, director of cybersecurity at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, emphasizes that Telegram goes beyond messaging. “It’s a social media platform holding vast amounts of user data, including unencrypted communications,” she says.

Galperin argues that a small team like Telegram’s struggles to handle legal requests, manage abuse, and moderate content effectively. She further questions the “quality” of the 30 engineers and suggests attackers might find this understaffing advantageous. In essence, experts doubt Telegram’s ability to effectively combat cyber threats, particularly from well-resourced actors, given its limited workforce.

Cybersecurity expert SwiftOnSecurity ignited a firestorm last week on X, stating the immense cost of maintaining robust cybersecurity. “The numbers are staggering,” SwiftOnSecurity wrote, implying even major corporations likely fall short on security investments.

This raises significant concerns for Telegram, a platform boasting nearly one billion users, including cryptocurrency enthusiasts, activists, and those prone to spreading misinformation. These factors make Telegram a prime target for both malicious actors and government surveillance. Yet, based on recent statements by founder Pavel Durov, Telegram appears to dedicate minimal resources to cybersecurity – potentially with just a handful of dedicated personnel.

Durov’s claim of a small team, coupled with the known challenges of maintaining top-tier security, suggests Telegram maybe even less secure than previously thought by experts. This raises questions about the platform’s suitability for users prioritizing data privacy and secure communication.

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WhatsApp Trials AI Image Generator

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Calling all creative minds! WhatsApp is testing a new feature that uses AI to generate personalized avatars. Imagine yourself as a superhero, chilling on a beach, or even exploring space – the possibilities are endless! WABetaInfo discovered this feature in the latest Android beta update.

Here’s the tech behind the magic: a combo of user images, text descriptions, and Meta’s powerful AI, Llama. “Take photos of yourself once, then imagine yourself in any setting from the forest to outer space,” reads the screenshot on WhatsApp. The way it works is in the Meta AI Chat: users can type “Imagine in…” or “@Meta AI imagine me…” as a text prompt. A user’s likeness will then be used to generate the personalized image.

While there’s no official release date yet, this exciting feature is entirely optional. It joins the recently launched in-app custom sticker maker, showcasing WhatsApp’s commitment to fostering creativity within the app. This, alongside their ongoing development of AI chat functionalities, highlights Meta’s focus on making WhatsApp a platform that embraces both technological innovation and user expression.

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YouTube’s New Eraser Tool Now Removes Songs Without Ruining Your Videos

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Good news for creators! YouTube has rolled out a major update to its eraser tool, allowing them to effortlessly remove copyrighted music from their videos without sacrificing other audio elements like dialogue or sound effects.

In a recent video, YouTube acknowledged that the previous version of the tool needed improvement in terms of accuracy. This new iteration addresses that concern by utilizing an AI-powered algorithm that precisely detects and removes unwanted songs while leaving the rest of the audio intact.

However, YouTube’s support page advises creators that the algorithm might not always achieve perfect separation. As an alternative, creators can opt to “Mute all sound in the claimed segments,” effectively silencing any portions potentially containing copyrighted material.

Once the edit is finalized, YouTube automatically removes the content ID claim, a system designed to identify the use of copyrighted material within videos on the platform. This allows creators to proceed with their uploads without copyright concerns.

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Apple Releases Final Cut Pro for iPad 2 Alongside New Final Cut Camera App

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Apple made a splash today with the official release of Final Cut Pro for iPad 2 and Final Cut Camera, building on its May announcement. These apps bring professional-grade video editing tools to the iPad, especially when paired with the new M4-powered iPad Pro.

Final Cut Pro for iPad 2 shines with the all-new Live Multicam feature. This lets creators connect and preview up to four cameras wirelessly, offering a director’s view of each camera and manual control through the Final Cut Camera app. Final Cut Camera runs on iPhones and iPads, allowing seamless multicam shooting with automatic transfer and synchronization of footage for hassle-free editing.

The M4 chip in the new iPad Pro takes centre stage. Apple boasts up to 2x faster rendering and support for 4x more ProRes RAW streams compared to the M1 iPad Pro, making editing smoother and more efficient. Final Cut Pro for iPad 2 now supports external projects, a highly requested feature that allows creators to work without filling up the iPad’s storage space. Final Cut Pro for Mac 10.8 introduces new AI features, including “Enhance Light and Color” for automatic color correction and “Smooth Slo-Mo” for enhanced slow-motion effects.

Final Cut Pro for iPad 2 and Final Cut Pro for Mac 10.8 are free updates for existing users. New users can access Final Cut Pro for iPad 2 through a monthly subscription ($4.99) or a yearly plan ($49). Final Cut Pro for Mac 10.8 is available for purchase on the Mac App Store for $299.99.

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