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Photo: Jeffrey Greenberg/UIG via Getty Images

For the first time ever, Consumer Reports has issued rankings based on the security and privacy of products and services, with an initial focus on peer-to-peer payment services such as Apple Pay and Venmo.

Why it matters: The nonprofit is one of the most trusted sources of information on products and companies in the United States and it intends these rankings to hold developers "more accountable."

Context:

  • It’s just the beginning — Consumer Reports will be pushing out ratings of other internet-connected products. That includes internet protocol (IP) cameras and possibly smart televisions, which it began evaluating back in February this year, a spokesperson told Axios.
  • These reviews will likely serve as a guide to about 15 million monthly unique visitors to ConsumerReports.org and 6 million members, according to traffic and circulation numbers shared with Axios.
  • By the numbers: Apple Pay was highest on data privacy, with an overall score of 76. Apple Pay, Cash App (Square), and Facebook P2P Payments in Messenger all received the highest ratings of any app ranked when it comes to data security. Other apps ranked included Venmo and Zelle.

How it works: Consumer Reports had a group of national privacy and security experts develop criteria by which to measure products.

What to watch: Usage patterns following the first round of security privacy ratings on peer-to-peer payment services.

Go deeper

Biden's centrist words, liberal actions

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

President Biden talks like a soothing centrist. He promises to govern like a soothing centrist. But early moves show that he is keeping his promise to advance a liberal agenda.

Why it matters: Never before has a president done more by executive fiat in such a short period of time than Biden. And those specific actions, coupled with a push for a more progressive slate of regulators and advisers, look more like the Biden of the Democratic primary than the unity-and-restraint Biden of the general election.

16 mins ago - Technology

Review of Trump ban marks major turning point for Facebook

Photo Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

Facebook's decision to ask its new independent Oversight Board to review the company's indefinite suspension of former President Trump is likely to set a critical precedent for how the social media giant handles political speech from world leaders.

What they're saying: "I very much hope and can expect … that they will uphold our decision," Facebook's VP of global affairs Nick Clegg tells Axios.

Updated 25 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Biden to attempt "emergency economic relief" by executive order

President Biden. Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

President Biden will continue his executive action blitz on Friday, issuing two more orders in an attempt to provide immediate relief to struggling families without waiting for Congress.

Why it matters: In his second full day in office, Biden is again resorting to executive actions as he tries to increase payments for nutritional assistance and protect workers' rights during the pandemic.