See What Facebook Knows About You

Whether you love it or hate it, Facebook is here to stay. With recent controversy of Facebook selling user data – it is mind boggling how much Internet knows about us and that info is not going away anywhere soon either.

But it is probably a good idea to review what companies like Facebook know about you. Here is how to access it.

In just a few easy steps you can download your whole history from Facebook and review all the photos, comments and phone calls Facebook has on you.

joffi / Pixabay

Since you have signed up, Facebook has been diligent with collecting and keeping everything you have done on their site. Remember all those high school conversations with your sweetheart or those private videos and pictures  you have shared as well as documents.

Facebook knows it all. Sometimes it knows you even better than you know yourself. The big brother.

So in case you want to go through megabytes after megabytes of data Facebook has on you – follow the following steps.

How to Download Your Facebook Private Data

Step 1: Click on top right of Facebook page

Step 2: Select Settings

Step 3: Click on “Download a copy of your Facebook data” below your General Account Settings, and confirm with green button.

It will take you between few minutes to few hours for Facebook to send you your zipped file with all the data it knows about you.

Even if you only use Facebook from time to time, you will be surprised on what you can find in there.

 

Toronto Is Among Fastest Growth Tech Innovation Hubs

According to KPMG recent report The Changing Landscape of Disruptive Technologies, Toronto was named a leader in the technology innovation hubs. Toronto has been in the news a lot lately due to being picked as a potential Amazon pick for HQ2 and other reports ranking Toronto highly when it comes to technology.

The report stated that:

“In Canada, Toronto’s strong ecosystem helped it draw 6 percent of the globe vote while on the western coast, Vancouver was named 1 percent of the respondends as a potential leading hub over the next four years. The tech sector in Canada continues to demonstrate robust growth led by advances in AI.”

Anuj Madan , Partner, Audit & National Industry Leader, Technology, Media & Telecommunications, added:

“Canada’s tech sector continues to surge, and the country remains a target destination for thriving global companies and entrepreneurs seeking access to a diverse, highly skilled and milticultural workforce. Smart, early-stage investment in AI and fintech have helped Canada become a research leader in machine learning and deep learning, setting stage for Industry 4.0.”

While Toronto is not #1 in the research it did beat out cities like Hong Kong and many US cities like Los Angeles , Seattle and Austin, Texas.

When it came to Canada , report mentioned that investments in AI and fintech helped Canada tech sector to thrive. As well as university research and infrastructure is there to support the ecosystem. Local companies like Shopify and Blackberry cemented Canada’s status as leader in R&D and innovation.

Toronto is home to over 4,000 startups making it one of largest hub in the world when it comes to tech. Toronto added 22,500 jobs in a matter of one year in 2016 with companies like Google and Amazon hiring more developers in Toronto.

ms416 / Pixabay

Report also highlited that Toronto will soon be developed as a smart city by Google’s Alphabet. It will be first in North America to be built around IT and use data about traffic , noise, air quality, and peformance of systems.

Report also mentioned Waterloo region as Toronto’s sidekick and only 18 minutes away by plane from Toronto. Report said that Waterloo is one of the best and top performing tech markets.

Canada is a leader in AI with fed government investing $96m USD to accelerate research and commercialization of AI.

Last but not least, report highlighted that over 300 fintech companies call Canada home and expecting accelerated growth over the next 5 years. Report notes the reason for growth is due to big banks getting into the game due to market disruption by starting their own or buying our fintech and AI startups.

ifinnsson / Pixabay

Report wrapped up with few notes to highlight a potential downside to sector’s growth.

  • First thing highlighted was Canada politeness, shyness and under ambition when it came to money. KPMG said that instead of growing their startups into billion dollar corporations, a lot of founders decide to exit via acquisition. The average exit is only $8m. With almost 2 million Canadian companies in existence, the ones that go the distance and achieve true scale can be counted on your fingers.
  • The second thing highlighted was NAFTA renegotiations, cross border regulations and how much Canada stands to lose.

Vancouver to Seattle Highspeed Train Almost a Reality

Update: While High speed train is being studied by both provincial and state governments, a private company, Harbour Air Seaplanes, has launched a seaplane that gets you in Seattle in around 1 hour from Vancouver.

The tickets are around $400 but if speed is what you are after – this will be the best option for you right now.  Please note Nexus, Enhanced Drivers Licenses and passport cards are not accepted at this border crossing. Passport is Required.


Who needs Amazon HQ2 in Canada, when you can soon be able to  travel by high speed train reaching speeds of about 400 km/h from Vancouver to Seattle. This means you can live and enjoy your free health care in Vancouver Canada while working and making double Canadian salary at Amazon HQ in Seattle in under 1 hour. Right now same that same trip takes around 4.5 hours.

British Columbia Premier John Horgan spoke approvingly of the possible high speed train after it was announced that BC provincial government will spend additional $300k to study the plan while Washington state approved funding of up to US$1.2 million toward the new in-depth study.

John Horgan, BC premier said:

“It’s our view that this is an opportunity that we shouldn’t let pass by. It’s a physical link between our two jurisdictions and one that will get cars off of the road and will move people and goods in a fast and effective way.”

“The convenience of a one-hour trip between Vancouver and Seattle would create countless opportunities for people in both B.C. and Washington, from sports or concert getaways for families, to untold economic growth potential for businesses. Exploring the possibility of creating a clean, efficient high-speed corridor is particularly important as the Pacific Northwest grows in economic importance, and we look to reduce barriers to expansion across our borders.”

This train corridor service would cut travel times between Vancouver and Seattle to about 60 minutes, from three to five hours.

If train link is successful it can help create up to 200,000 jobs for B.C. and U.S. workers, and generate billions of dollars in economic benefits.

 

Toronto Tech CEO Spies on Women

Toronto CEO Peter Forde of 3D Avatar company, ItsMe, is accused of voyeurism by Toronto’s police.  He has been charged with six counts of voyeurism.

He was found to be recording women inside their homes without their knowledge or consent. The incidents of voyeurism happened around Queen St. W. and Spadina Ave. area in mid March.

Toronto police released a statement:

““We won’t release details of the evidence or what, if any, relationship exists between him and any of the victims. However, the evidence does indicate that there are more victims.””

Anyone with additional information is asked to contact Toronto police at 416-808-1400, or Crime Stoppers anonymously at 416-222-TIPS (8477), online at www.222tips.com.

Passport Canada Web Scam

If you are looking around for renewing your passport beware what you search for on Google. The website that calls itself Passport Canada “helps” you renew your passport by charging a whopping $192 fee when the service’s information is free when you apply via Government’s website.

The website pops up when you search for “renew my passport canada” or other similar searches on Google. The website called, Passport Online, tries to resemble Government of Canada website for renewing passports. Asking you questions like “Are you Canadian citizen?” before charging you few hundred dollars to “help” you with your applications that you would normally do for free.

Essentially, the website itself, is giving you information you can get for free but charges you for information on how to renew your passport without renewing your passport. So that confuses a lot of people who pay the service yet still have to go to Passport Office and pay more money to actually renew their passport.

The website does state:

“We provide the convenience, freedom and ability to help or assist those in need .… We charge a nominal fee to have applications reviewed and facilitated,” and this doesn’t include any government fees.”

Passport Canada is advising Canadians to watch out for “certain organizations claim to offer ‘support’ to Canadian citizens who want to apply for a passport, such as by selling information kits that outline application procedures. Some also falsely claim to be able to speed up the passport application process for an additional fee.” Passport Canada even states that sometimes these promises can be considered a fraud.

So watch out, and just use Government’s official website to renew your Canadian passport for your upcoming Mexico vacation.

Quebec Punishes Netflix Users with Tax

Netflix recently announced that it will be investing around half a billion dollars into Canadian media production. You would think Canada and its provinces would be happy? Turns out not so much for Province of Quebec, mainly French speaking province.

Quebec provincial government has decided that they now need to tax video services across the province even though the service is not taxable federally or in other provinces. Starting 2019 Quebec will require all video services to add QST , provincial service tax, to providers of video like Netflix, Amazon Video, etc.

JoeBreuer / Pixabay

Quebec said it does not matter if a company is based physically in Quebec or Canada, but as soon as it hits $30k in revenues, it will require that service to start adding QST to their pricing schemes or face penalties.

It will be interesting to see how they will try to enforce it when Quebec has no jurisdiction outside its province and Netflix does not have an office or physical presence in Quebec. What happens if Netflix won’t comply?  Will they ask Videotron and other Internet Providers to ban the video streaming websites outright like China does?

Twitter users were not so happy this this announcement:

Why is Quebec so overzealous on collecting taxes no other state or province in North America collects? Simple, even though Quebec is the highest taxed province in North America – it wants to collect even more tax dollar from foreign billion dollar internet companies.

Quebec believes it’s losing out on $226.8 million annually in tax revenues from e-commerce and by taxing media services Quebec says it will add $150m to their tax coffers.

Big Telcos in Canada Raising Rates

If you are with Rogers or Bell you are about to spend more money on their services. Rogers, Bell and Telus are main providers of internet services in Canada capturing more than 90% share of the market according to CRTC, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission that is mandated by the government to be a regulatory agency for broadcasting and telecommunications.

Rates Increases – What We Know So Far

  • Rogers is hiking the rates a whopping $8 to be exact a month for any download speeds of 20mbs or more.
  • Bell is increasing their rates by $5 a month.
  • Telus is not going to be increasing their rates at this time.

Users were furious about this sudden rate increase.

Both Rogers and Bell when contacted said that the rates’ increases will go ahead and are definitely needed as they struggle to “help fund improvements in the reach and capabilities” of their growing networks.

But never fear there are many other internet providers you can use such as Tekksavy and Start.ca with their plans starting as low as $40 and are month to month meaning you can cancel any time.