Posts tagged with "The New York Times"

Why Facebook may know when you last had sex

September 11, 2019

Did you think that you and your partner or spouse were the only ones who knew (maybe, aside from your next-door neighbors) when you two last had sex? Wrong. Facebook may know, too, according to a September 9 report in The New York Times. And they also may know when it’s “that time of the month.”

How is that possible?

According to the UK-based privacy watchdog, Privacy International, at least two menstruation- and ovulation-tracking apps, Maya and MIA Fem, have shared intimate details of users’ sexual health with Facebook, the world’s largest social media platform, as well as other entities.

In some cases, the data shared with external social media (which are self-recorded by users in the app) included:

  • When a user last had sex,
  • The type of contraception used,
  • Her mood, and
  • Whether she was ovulating.

The Times notes, “The findings raise questions about the security of our most private information in an age where employers, insurers, and advertisers can use data to discriminate or target certain categories of people.”

The information was shared with the social media giant via the Facebook Software Development Kit, a product that allows developers to create apps for specific operating systems, track analytics, and monetize their apps through Facebook’s advertising network. Privacy International found that Maya and MIA began sharing data with Facebook as soon as a user installed the app on her phone and opened it, even before a privacy policy was signed.

Facebook spokesperson Joe Osborne told the new outlet that advertisers did not have access to the sensitive health information shared by these apps. In a statement, he said Facebook’s ad system “does not leverage information gleaned from people’s activity across other apps or websites” when advertisers choose target users by interestBuzzFeed first reported the news.

However, the fact is that today, many apps still are not subject to the same rules as most health data.

Some of the apps even have come under scrutiny as powerful monitoring tools for employers and health insurers, which have aggressively pushed to gather more data about their workers’ lives than ever before under the banner of corporate wellness. Plus, it appears the data could be shared more broadly than many users recognize, as flagged by the Privacy International study.

Several period- and pregnancy-tracking apps have been called out for sharing health data with women’s employers and insurance companies, as well as for security flaws that reveal intimate information, the Times reports.

Deborah C. Peel, a psychiatrist and founder of the nonprofit Patient Privacy Rights, based in Austin, Texas,  told the Times that people expect their health data to be protected by the same laws that protect their health information in a doctors office, but that many apps aren’t subject to the same rules.

“Most people would want to make their own decisions about what’s known about their sex life, about whether it’s shared or not,” said Peel. “Right now we have no ability to do that.”

Research contact: @nytimes

Air Force does pricey refuels in Scotland and crews layover at TrumpTurnberry—all on US voters’ dime

September 11, 2019

The Trump Organization and President Donald Trump, himself, were directly involved in developing a partnership between his Turnberry golf resort on the southwest coast of Scotland and Glasgow Prestwick Airport, The New York Times first reported this week.

The partnership, which began a year before Trump’s presidential campaign kicked off, worked to add TrumpTurnberry to a list of hotels used by the airport’s aircrew on stopovers— despite the fact that it is significantly farther away from the airport than other hotels used in a similar manner and has higher advertised prices, according to the Times.

What’s more, the president has arranged with the U.S. Air Force to refuel American aircraft—paying consumer prices for the fuel—at the Glasgow Prestwick Airport, a military maneuver that has not been approved by the Scottish government.

And the Air Force pilots and crew for those planes also are staying at the Trump Turnberry–on the dime of U.S. voters.

“We provide a full handling service for customers and routinely arrange overnight accommodation for visiting aircrew when requested,” the Prestwick airport said in a statement on Monday.

“We use over a dozen local hotels, including TrumpTurnberry, which accounts for a small percentage of the total hotel bookings we make,” it added.

The report comes amid controversy over U.S. military personnel staying at the resort while traveling through the airport in March, The Hill reported..

Trump has repeatedly denied involvement in the move, tweeting Monday, “I know nothing about an Air Force plane landing at an airport (which I do not own and have nothing to do with) near Turnberry Resort (which I do own) in Scotland, and filling up with fuel, with the crew staying overnight at Turnberry (they have good taste!) NOTHING TO DO WITH ME”

However, Air Force plane stops at Prestwick have increased from 180 in 2017 to 257 in 2018—and 259 so far, including 220 overnight stays, in 2019. That means lots of money is being made–both by the Trump resort and the airport.

Air Force officials could not tell the Times how many times crews had been sent to TrumpTurnberry specifically but said they are combing through vouchers to determine the exact count.

According to Natasha Bertrand, a reporter for Politico and an MSNBC contributor, the House Oversight committee has begun an investigation into whether U.S. military expenditures have been propping up TrumpTurnberry.

She says, “A peculiar refueling stop in Glasgow by a U.S. Air Force crew, who stayed overnight at the resort—there&back—tipped them off.’

What’s more, she tweeted, “One crew member was so struck by the choice of hotel—markedly different than the Marriotts and Hiltons the 176th maintenance squadron is used to—that he texted someone close to him and said the crew’s per diem allowance wasn’t enough to cover food and drinks at the ritzy resort.”

The Hill has reached out to the White House for comment.

Research contact: @TrumpTurnberry

 

 

#1 with a bullet: San Francisco board resolves that the NRA is top ‘domestic terrorist organization’

September 6, 2019

Unsettled by recent mass shootings across the nation—including the latest, in Odessa, Texas—the San Francisco Board of Supervisors unanimously approved a resolution (No. 190841) this week “declaring the National Rifle Association to be a domestic terrorist organization and urging other cities, states, and the federal government to do the same.”

The resolution was introduced by Supervisor Catherine Stefani on July 30—two days after a shooting at a garlic festival in Gilroy, California, in which three people were killed and more than a dozen others injured, The New York Times reported.

Before the resolution was put to a vote on Tuesday , September 3, Stefani spoke about the “carnage across this country,” also citing mass shootings last month in El PasoDayton, Ohio; and near Odessa, Texas.

Stefani said the NRA conspires to limit gun violence research, restrict gun violence data sharing and block every piece of sensible gun violence prevention legislation proposed at local, state, and federal levels.

 “The NRA exists to spread pro-gun propaganda and put weapons in the hands of those who would harm and terrorize us,”. Stefani said in a statement. “Nobody has done more to fan the flames of gun violence than the NRA.”

While the resolution has no practical effect,. Stefani said in an interview with the Times on Wednesday, “I firmly believe that words matter, and I think this is a step in fighting the negative impact of the NRA.”

The N.R.A. characterized the action as “a publicity stunt.”

“This is just another worthless and disgusting ‘sound-bite remedy’ to the violence epidemic gripping our nation,” Amy Hunter, a spokesperson for the association, said in a statement on Wednesday, according to the Times. “This is a reckless assault on a law-abiding organization, its members, and the freedoms they all stand for. We remain undeterred, guided by our values and belief in those who want to find real solutions to gun violence.” Stefani referred to the federal Justice Department’s definition of terrorist activity, which involves the use of a firearm, weapon or dangerous device to endanger the safety of individuals. The definition also includes members of organizations that provide funds, weapons or training to individuals who commit terrorist acts.

Research contact: @nytimes

Democrats alarmed by Trump’s offer of pardons to those who break law to build the border wall

August 30, 2019

“If he builds it, they will come.” Just as the famous line from the 1989 movie, Field of Dreams promised, President Donald Trump now believes that if he builds the wall at the border, they—his voter base—will come to the polls for him.

And he’s willing to do almost anything to accomplish his goal. Indeed, he is supposedly considering using funding originally designated for disaster aid within the United States; urging subordinates to seize land unlawfully, and offering pardons to those who get in trouble on his behalf.

The notion of pardoning those who use illegal means to build a border wall has alarmed congressional Democrats, who had been investigating potential obstruction of justice on Trump’s part as the House continues to weigh whether to launch impeachment proceedings once lawmakers return to the Capitol next month, The Washington Post reported on August 28. 

Representative David Cicilline (Rhode Island), a member of the House Democratic leadership and the House Judiciary Committee, said any suggestion that Trump would encourage subordinates to break the law by promising pardons is “appalling” and worthy of further investigation by the panel.

 “Sadly, this is just one more instance of a president who undermines the rule of law and behaves as if he’s a king and not governed by the laws of this country,” Cicilline said in an interview with the Post on Wednesday. “He is not a king, he is accountable … I think it just adds to the ongoing proceeding before the Judiciary Committee as we consider whether to recommend articles of impeachment against the president.”

Trump on Wednesday denied that he had made those private assurances, first reported Tuesday evening by The Washington Post. Yet a White House official who spoke on the condition of anonymity in advance of the report did not deny it and said Trump is joking when he makes such statements about pardons.

“Another totally Fake story in the Amazon Washington Post (lobbyist) which states that if my Aides broke the law to build the Wall (which is going up rapidly), I would give them a Pardon,” Trump tweeted Wednesday afternoon. “This was made up by The Washington Post only in order to demean and disparage — FAKE NEWS!” 

The wall discussions are not the first time that Trump has reportedly promised a pardon to a subordinate for doing something potentially illegal, according to the news outlet.

In April, The New York Times reported that Trump told Acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan that he would pardon him if he directed his personnel to illegally deny asylum to migrants who request it at the southern border. Trump later denied doing so in a tweet, calling it “Another Fake Story.”

Cicilline said it did not matter whether Trump’s subordinates ultimately carried out his illegal directives. “It’s an abuse of the pardon power, it’s an abuse of the president’s authority, and it’s very likely illegal,” he said. “So whether anyone actually does it or not—that idea that the president of the United States, responsible for enforcing and upholding the rule of law in this country, is making a statement like that is just appalling.”

Research contact: @washingtonpost

Shine on: A diamond made from the ashes of the dearly departed sparks joy at a proposal

August 23, 2019

When a girl gets engaged, there’s nothing she wants more than to celebrate with family and friends. But what if one of those dearest to her already has passed on?

The departed—either human or pet—can still help “spark joy” during this special time; thanks to Eterneva, a company based in Austin, Texas,  that creates lab-grown diamonds out of the carbon from remains.

One Diamond Girl (as singers Seals & Crofts would say) from Viera, Florida, learned all about the joys of wearing an Eternava engagement ring, when she was presented with one during a surprise proposal by her now-fiancé, Paul Vasso.

As The New York Times reported on August 22, Shayla Mansfield gets a lot of compliments on her diamond engagement ring. She always has the same response when she does. “Thank you, it’s actually my mother’s ashes,” says Mansfield, 29.

The bride-to-be’s mother, Shirley Mansfield, died on December 29, 2017, at age 58, from acute myeloid leukemia, the Times says; but Shayla’s longtime boyfriend was not about to leave her out of the pre-wedding revelry.

Shortly after Shayla’s much-loved mom died, Vasso saw a Facebook post that a friend shared about turning the ashes of loved ones into a diamond. After getting permission (and a portion of Shirley’s ashes) from the rest of Shayla’s family—and swearing them to secrecy—Vasso asked Eterneva to make the center stone for Shayla’s engagement ring.

Adelle Archer, 28, a founder of Eterneva, which is still a startup after two years in business, told The New York Times that the company has helped other couples transform the ashes of loved ones. “People say diamonds are forever and they’re the symbol of love and permanence,” she said. “How much more meaningful could it get than to have somebody that you hold dear, that can’t be there on your wedding day, to get to be part of that commitment that you make?”

And Eterneva is not the only firm that is capitalizing on the hereafter. LifeGem, which is based in Des Plaines, Illinois, began its ashes-to-diamonds operation in 2002. Dean VandenBiesen, 56, a company founder, said he is proud he is able to provide a personal way to pay homage to a loved one. “It brings a measure of comfort, which I think is kind of a big deal in a very difficult time,” he said.

LifeGem’s showroom allows people a chance to learn more about the process. It involves using extreme heat in a vacuum induction furnace to convert the carbon material to graphite. The graphite is then placed into a diamond press that mimics the forces deep within the earth and allows diamond crystals to form.

Only a relatively small amount of ashes are required to grow a diamond. Ms. Archer of Eterneva says a typical cremation will yield eight to 10 cups and that a half-cup can generate “at least a couple of grams of carbon,” more than enough to yield multiple diamonds. Eterneva sends back any unused ashes to customers or will store a loved one’s remains on site for an indefinite time in case the need to create a replacement diamond ever arises.

According to the Times report, because the diamonds are grown one at a time, and come in a variety of colors, they can be pricey. For $2,490, Eterneva’s clients will get a 0.1- to 0.19-carat accent diamond. It’s $20,199 for a black diamond 1.0 to 1.24 carats; this is the most expensive and difficult to produce of all the colors, according to Ms. Archer. LifeGem’s top-tier diamonds are $24,999 for a 1.5-carat red or green variety.

Research contact: @nytimes

Would you like a podcast with those fries?

August 21, 2019

While serial murders and sports seem to be trending among podcast audiences, other topics are slowly catching on. Among the latest “ear candy”: Phil in the Blanks by Dr. Phil, the TED Radio Hour, and Sasquatch Chronicles.

And did you catch The Sauce?

That three-episode “investigative podcast” was released last year by the media company Gizmodo and had somewhat lower stakes than the exoneration of a convicted murderer, according to a report by The New York Times.

With an eerie soundtrack meant to draw in the usual blood-and-guts devotees, the show examined the “mystery” of how McDonald’s underestimated demand for a popular Szechuan dipping sauce, a teriyaki-flavored concoction made famous by the Hulu animated show Rick & Morty—and unexpectedly enraged thousands of its customers.

At some of the chain’s locations, fights broke out as customers tussled over the scant supply of sauce packets. The twist? The hard-boiled investigator scrutinizing that sauce shortage was McDonald’s itself.

Indeed, the Times reports, The Sauce was a branded podcast that McDonald’s paid Gizmodo to produce as a tongue-in-cheek apology to disappointed customers.

While it’s no exposé, the podcast offers a popular example of how companies increasingly are using the tropes of popular podcasts in their own audio projects. These are not advertisements, exactly, says the news outlet, but subtle brand-building efforts intended to entertain as well as persuade.

And McDonald’s is far from the only business that is capitalizing on the trend.

]“You get to catch that busy person where you couldn’t normally get them,” Rob Walch, a vice president at Libsyn, a podcast distributor that works with companies developing branded content, told the news outlet. “They’re listening with earbuds, and you’re literally inside their head.”

By some estimates, there are now as many as 750,000 podcasts, so it’s not necessarily a surprise that major companies are creating their own. What’s more surprising is that consumers, conditioned to skip past commercials on YouTube and install ad blockers on their browsers, are actually listening to them. Within a day of its release last year, The Sauce broke into iTunes’ top-100 podcast chart, reaching No. 94.

Among them is Trader Joe’s, which offers a monthly podcast that is dedicated entirely to the inner workings of its stores. After the first episode last year, Inside Trader Joe’s ranked No. 5 on the iTunes chart.

The supermarket’s loyal following doesn’t seem to mind the self-promotion. “Inside Trader Joe’s” has almost a perfect five-star rating on iTunes.

One of the longest-running branded podcasts is an interview show called  Keeping You Organized which began in 2013. It’s produced by Smead, a company that manufactures manila folders.

Every week, the show’s host, the Smead marketing manager John Hunt, interviews a professional organizer about topics such as  how to efficiently dispose of the scraps left over from cutting coupons out of magazines. “It’s not that easy to talk about things like file folders,” Hunt told the Times. “But it is easier for us to talk about organizing.”

Research contact: @nytimes

There’s no safety in (phone) numbers

August 19, 2019

How many of us have “exchanged digits” with new acquaintances, written our phone numbers on customer profiles, and entered them into job applications? Roughly 100%? And what could possibly be wrong with this practice?

A column posted on August 15 by Brian X. Chen, the lead Consumer Technology writer at The New York Times may change your mind about that. Chen encourages readers, “Before you hand over your number, ask yourself: Is it worth the risk?”

Now that many of us have shifted from landlines to mobile devices, we rarely change phone numbers—bringing them with us when we move homes, schools, jobs, and accounts..

At the same time, the Times reports, our exclusive string of digits has increasingly become connected to apps and online services that are hooked into our personal lives. And it can lead to information from our offline worlds, including where we live and more.

In fact, your phone number may have now become an even stronger identifier than your full name, Chen believes.

He went out of his way to prove this theory recently, when he provided his phone number to Fyde, a mobile security firm based in Palo Alto, California.

Emre Tezisci, a security researcher at Fyde—and a self-described “ninja engineer” with a background in telecommunications, took on the task “with gusto,” Chen wrote, noting that, for purposes of the test, he and Tezisci previously “had never met or talked.”

Tezisci quickly plugged Chen’s cellphone number into White Pages Premium, an online database that charges $5 a month for access to public records. He then did a thorough web search and followed a data trail — linking Chen’s name and address to information in other online background-checking tools and public records — to track down more details.

“Soon,” Chen wrote in his Times column, “he had a full dossier on me — including my name and birth date, my address, the property taxes I pay and the names of members of my family.

From there, the situation quickly might have deteriorated. Tezisci could have used that information to try to answer security questions that would enable him to break into Chen’s online accounts. Or he could have targeted Chen or his loved ones with sophisticated phishing attacks. He and the other researchers at Fyde opted not to do so, since such attacks are illegal.

“If you want to give out your number, you are taking additional risk that you might not be aware of,” Fyde CEO Sinan Eren,  told Chen in an interview. “Because of collisions in names due to the massive number of people online today, a phone number is a stronger identifier.”

In just an hour, this is what the Fyde researcher found:

  • Chen’s current home address, its square footage, the cost of the property and the taxes he pays on it;
  • His past addresses from the last decade;
  • The full names of his mother, father, sister, and aunt;
  • Past phone numbers, including the landline for his parents’ home; and
  • Lack of a criminal record.

While Fyde declined to hack into Chen’s accounts , the company warned that there was plenty an attacker could do with the information:

  • Reset the password for an online account by answering such security questions as “What is your mother’s maiden name?”
  • Trick a customer service representative for that person’s phone carrier into porting my number onto a new SIM card, thus hijacking my digits — a practice called SIM swapping.
  • Mislead members of the person’s family into sharing their passwords or sending money.
  • Target the phone number with phishing texts and robocalls.
  • Break into the person’s voicemail and listen to messages.

So, when is it wise to share your number (and when is it not?

There are some situations when sharing your phone number is reasonable. When you enter your user name and password to get into your online banking account, the bank may call or text you with a temporary code that you must enter before you can log in. This is a security mechanism known as two-factor verification. In this situation, your phone number is a useful extra factor to prove you are who you say you are, The Times writer notes.

But which companies should you trust with your phone number? Unfortunately, Chen says, there is no neat solution.

As for two-factor authentication, most tech companies offer other verification options. They include apps that generate temporary security codes or a physical security key that can be plugged in. Generally, those are safer to use than a phone number.

Finally, a word to the wise: If you have business cards with your personal number printed on them, shred them and order new ones with just your office line.

Research contact: @nytimes

Stacey Abrams for VP? Popular Georgia public servant says she’d accept an offer

August 15, 2019

Stacey Abrams, who lost her 2018 gubernatorial race in Georgia by a narrow margin to Republican Brian Kemp, said she would be “honored” to be considered as a running mate for any of the two dozen hopefuls who are making a bid for the Democratic presidential nomination next year, The Hill reported on August 14.

“I would be honored to be considered by any nominee,” she said in an interview with The New York Times that was published Wednesday. 

Abrams already had announced on August 13 that she would not throw her hat into the presidential race-but that she would work instead to combat voter suppression and increase participation in the 2020 census.

However, her personal charisma and political acuity are not to be ignored: As another option, she said she would privileged to be chosen as the vice presidential candidate, should the nominee approach her.

According to The Hill, the Georgia Democrat has cited voter suppression as a reason for her defeat, noting the removal of thousands of people who had failed to cast ballots in recent elections from voting rolls and hours-long lines at some precincts.

I’ve been thinking about this for the last few weeks, an I’ve just come to the decision that my best value add, the strongest contribution I can give to this primary, would be to make sure our nominee is coming into an environment where there’s strong voter protections in place,” she told the Times.

Abrams added that she did not want to wage a campaign “simply because the office is available” and that she’s “been pleased with the direction of the field,” urging all the candidates to also prioritize voter suppression and campaign in Georgia.

Several Democratic presidential candidates already have vowed to (or suggested they might) pick a female running mate if nominated. Senator Cory Booker (D-New Jersey)  vowed in April to pick a woman as his vice president, while former Representative Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas) said in March it would “very difficult not to select a woman” as his running mate.”

Research contact: @thehill

Virginia State Dems and Black Caucus boycott Trump speech at Jamestown ceremony

July 31, 2019

In a speech interrupted by a Muslim lawmaker who heckled him—and boycotted by the Virginia State Democratic legislative caucus, as well as the Black Legislative Caucus—President Donald Trump commemorated the 400th anniversary of American democracy in Jamestown, Virginia, on July 30.

Indeed, as Trump delivered a text intended to celebrate America’s self-rule and to dispel his own image as a racist—following a week in which he had disparaged legislators and activists of color, including The Squad of four progressive female lawmakers in the House; Representative Elijah Cummings (D-Maryland), and the Reverend Al Sharpton—a lone protestor rose from the audience to take him to task.

Ibraheem Samirah, a Democrat serving the state’s 86th District in Virginia’s General Assembly—and a son of Palestinian refugees who was separated from his father in middle school when the senior Samirah was not allowed to return to the United States—stood and held up signs that read “deport hate” and “reunite my family.”

A third message said “go back to your corrupted home,” the Washington Times reported.

Although he was escorted out of the venue, Samirah said in a statement that he was confident his constituents would rather have him protest than “passively accept” Trump’s presence.

Other lawmakers had voiced their disapproval before the speech. The Black Legislative Caucus announced on July 29 that its members would not attend the celebration, saying that Trump’s participation is “antithetical to the principles” for which the group stands. Caucus members instead planned alternative commemorative events in Richmond.

“Surely there’s a better voice for such an occasion,” Delegate Lamont Bagby (D-74th District-Virginia)  –who heads the Black Caucus– wrote on Twitter.  

Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney resigned from the Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation’s steering committee for the commemoration event, writing in his resignation letter that Trump “denigrates our democracy” and has no place at the event, the Times reported.

“We will not be attending any part of the commemorative session where Donald Trump is in attendance,” the Virginia House Democrats said on Twitter. “The current President does not represent the values that we would celebrate at the 400th anniversary of the oldest democratic body in the western world.

According to a report on the event by The New York Times, as he took questions for over ten minutes following his speech, President Donald Trump appeared not to know that a boycott was in place, saying he would be “shocked” if opponents of color were declining to attend the event.

“If that’s the case, they’re fighting against their people,” Trump said, repeating an unverified claim that his administration had been receiving calls nonstop praising his comments on Baltimore as a vermin- and rat-infested city. “The African-American people have been calling the White House. They have never been so happy about what a president has done.”

“I think I’m helping myself,” Trump said. “These people are living in hell in Baltimore.”

Research contact: @WashTimes

Neutrogena recalls Light Therapy Acne Masks, due to risk of eye injuries

July 22, 2019

Many consumers have “seen the light” when it comes to over-the counter acne LED-light therapy masks—and that’s not necessarily a good thing. In fact, earlier this month, Neutrogena issued a recall of its masks, according to The New York Times;  citing a “theoretical risk of eye injury” to a subset of users who have underlying eye conditions or are taking medicine that makes them sensitive to light.

The Times reported that Neutrogena said in a statement that its July 5 recall followed “reports of mild, transient visual adverse events, combined with a growing scientific discussion around the safety of blue light.”

A spokesperson told the news outlet that the “adverse events” had been caused by the Neutrogena masks; although she did not specify how many such events had taken place. She also said that no particular study or expert had informed the company’s decision to recall the masks.

But that is not the only brand that uses visible blue and red lights to treat facial acne. And it may not be the only mask that is causing problems—problems which the Australian Department of Health recently said could cause retinal damage or impair peripheral vision after repeated therapy with the lights.

Among the most popular among these devices are the Lacomri 7 Color LED Light Therapy Acne Mask, Convinsimo Light Therapy Acne Face Treatment, Neutrogena Light Therapy Acne Mask, and Pulsaderm Acne Clearing Mask.

They all use the same treatment technology, explains the American Academy of Dermatology.

And that also may mean that they might share another problem: Such devices kill facial bacteria that could turn into pimples; they are not effective against existing blackhead, whiteheads, acne cysts, or nodules, the academy explains.

Indeed, says the academy, “Most people see clearing, but not 100%”—and “results vary from person to person.”

News of the recalls in the United States and in Australia was for the most part missed by consumers . A spokesperson for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration told the Times that the agency was “aware of the recall” and was looking into it.

The mask was released by Neutrogena in October 2016. Actress Lena Dunham endorsed it on Instagram and said her post was not an advertisement. The product was awarded Best of Beauty in 2017 by Allure magazine..)

Dr. Rachel Nazarian, with Schweiger Dermatology Group in New York City, told the news outlet that only recently had concerns about blue light cropped up, and that they mostly referred to people who had baseline medical conditions that caused their retinas to be more sensitive to light.

But she said that Neutrogena’s mask did not offer enough eye protection. While she planned to continue to use LED treatments in her own practice, she said she used much stronger eyewear than was provided by the company.

“It shouldn’t be used in such a cavalier form,” Dr. Nazarian said. “If you’re using the right eyewear protection, you should be fine.”

Research contact: @nytimes