Friday Five: Space trips and TikTok’s parental controls

1. Sign up here if you fancy going into space…

Elon Musk’s spaceflight company SpaceX is planning to send four private citizens into space at the end of 2021 or in early 2022. It has announced an agreement with Space Adventures, a space tourism business that has helped seven members of the public visit the International Space Station on a Russian rocket.

2. Knock twice to log in as Ring gets protective

After a string of privacy issues, Amazon is making two-factor authentication mandatory for its Ring smart home security systems. The update sends the user a different six-digit code every time they log into their Ring account, and is the latest effort made by the company to prevent device hacks and data leaks.

3. Adidas turns to WhatsApp to reach fans

Despite Facebook’s decision to scrap the idea of running ads on WhatsApp, Adidas is ramping up its plans to use the platform as a direct marketing channel. The sportswear giant has been using WhatsApp to chat directly with customers for five years but, rather than building ‘hyper-local communities’ (the original plan), it’s now being seen as the main platform for global campaigns.

4. TikTok to give parents control over kids’ app

The Chinese social media video app TikTok is introducing a new ‘family safety mode’ designed to give parents more control over what their kids can see on the app. Parents can link their TikTok account to their child’s and turn features on and off remotely, including a ‘restricted mode’ and the ability to receive messages.

5. Met Office forecasts a £1.2bn supercomputer

Is it ever going to stop raining? (Actually, as I look out the window, it just has). Well, soon we’ll be able to know more accurately than ever if there’s going to be a break in the clouds, with the government about to invest £1.2bn in a forecasting supercomputer that will be the most advanced of its kind in the world.

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