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Tech Bytes – Week of Apr 4

📰 Recent Top Tech News

  1. Taco Bell wants customers to Chat to Buy with its latest acquisition

  2. Hacker leaks 553 Million users info from Facebook – for free

  3. Warehouse Robot now matches human speed in moving boxes

The Takeaways

1. Taco Bell owner Yum Brands acquires Tiktuk (that’s the correct spelling, nothing to do with Tiktok), a company specialising in Conversational Commerce. This is to offer customers the ability to order via SMS, Facebook Messenger, and other social media chat apps. 

🔎 Our Take

  • Like other leaders in online ordering, such as Dominos and Starbucks, Yum Brands is focused on reducing the friction to order something. While many customers might not have a Taco Bell app installed, everyone has SMS and most people have Facebook messenger.

🧁 Your Takeaway

  • Reducing the friction, of customers buying from you, should be a key focus area in your business. If you have a website, enable a chatbot and a contact form. If you have a retail store, ensure you are registered on Google My Business and enabled Messaging in that. Ensure accountability for timely responses.

2. A hacker leaks Facebook 553 Million users names, phone numbers, addresses and many emails. This data is from a 2019 breach, after which Facebook had fixed the data leak. This is in the news again as a hacker has released the entire database online for free on a dark web forum

🔎 Our Take

  • The size and scale of Facebook’s user base means that when some data leaks from Facebook, it leaks a lot of data. In this case, it’s a lot of contact information. Out of the 553 Million contacts, only 2.5 Million had emails on them. The value of the contacts is less about privacy concerns, with the main risks from identity theft and phishing attacks. 

🧁 Your Takeaway

  • This particular data leak only exposed names, numbers and emails. Check to see if your email is listed in the leaks. It’s generally safe to assume that by now, your email and a few of your social details are floating around the internet. Keep an eye out for phishing attempts and turn on Two Factor authentication where available.

3. Boston Dynamics launches Stretch, a robot designed to help move boxes in a warehouse. Stretch is claimed to be able to move 800 boxes an hour, with battery charging allowing 8 hours of us.

🔎 Our Take

  • With 80% of the world’s warehouses without any automation at all, this represents one of the harder problems to solve in warehouse automation. Companies like Amazon have been obsessed with automating warehouse work which is very labour intensive, so we expect this kind of box picker to be adopted as soon as possible.

🧁 Your Takeaway

  • While this picker technology is just emerging, consider other ways to automate your business such as using a QR code tracking system to keep track of your inventory, and reduce reliance on yourself to remember where things are.

Jargon Buster

  • Dark Web: The hidden internet systems that are not publically accessible.

  • The internet that we normally see through our web browsers such as Chrome or Safari represents a small fraction of the entire Internet that Google can reach. Beyond this visible internet, there are some systems are not publicly available, accessible via only special software, such as ‘Tor’. Whenever we hear in the public news about a database being leaked, there’s usually dark web forums where this would have been first published. 

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