Facebook For Spies

Apr 11 2013 @ 6:45pm

Robert Beckhausen reports on a 007-worthy addition to the popular photo-sharing platform:

Facebook is a place where you can share pictures of cute animals and fun activities. Now there’s a browser extension that lets you encode those images with secret, hard-to-detect messages. That’s the idea behind Secretbook, a browser extension released this week by 21-year-old Oxford University computer science student and former Google intern Owen-Campbell Moore. With the extension, anyone — you, your sister, a terrorist — could share messages hidden in JPEG images uploaded to Facebook without the prying eyes of the company, the government or anyone else noticing or figuring out what the messages say. The only way to unlock them is through a password you create. …

[It's] the first time anyone’s managed to figure out how to automate digital steganography — the practice of concealing messages inside computer files — through Facebook, the world’s biggest social media platform. Unlike cryptography, which uses ciphertext to encrypt messages, steganographic messages are simply hidden where no one would think to look.