• February 4, 2023

After Data Breach Exposes 530 Million, Facebook Says It Will Not Notify Users : NPR

The leaked data includes personal information from 533 million Facebook users in 106 countries. Olivier Douliery / AFP via Getty Images Hide caption

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Olivier Douliery / AFP via Getty Images

The leaked data includes personal information from 533 million Facebook users in 106 countries.

Olivier Douliery / AFP via Getty Images

Facebook has decided not to notify more than 530 million Facebook users whose personal information was revoked shortly before August 2019 due to a breach and recently made available in a public database. Facebook also has no plans to do so, said a spokesman.

Phone numbers, full names, locations, some email addresses and other details from user profiles were posted on an amateur hacking forum on Saturday. Business Insider reports last week.

The leaked data includes personal information from 533 million Facebook users in 106 countries.

In response to the coverage, Facebook said in a blog post On Tuesday, “malicious actors” deleted the data by exploiting a security vulnerability in a function on the platform that has now broken down and that allowed users to find themselves by phone number.

The social media company said they found the problem and fixed it in August 2019 and it is confident that the same route can no longer be used to scrape off that data.

“We are not currently planning to notify users individually,” a Facebook spokesman told NPR.

According to the spokesman, the company does not have full confidence in knowing which users would need to be notified. He also said that when deciding whether to notify users, the company weighed the fact that the information was publicly available and that it wasn’t an issue that users could fix themselves.

According to Facebook, the information didn’t include financial information, health information, or passwords, but the data leak still leaves users vulnerable, security experts say.

“Fraudsters can do an enormous amount with little information from us,” said Adam Levin, CyberScout founder, cybersecurity expert and consumer protection advocate. In the case of this violation, he said, “It is serious when phone numbers are out there. The danger when you have phone numbers in particular is a universal identifier.”

Phone numbers are increasingly used to connect people to their digital presence, including using two-factor authentication via SMS and phone calls to verify one’s identity.

The abuse of its user data is a familiar struggle for Facebook, and its handling of user privacy has come under scrutiny.

In July 2019, months before the above issue was resolved, Facebook reached a $ 5 billion settlement with the U.S. Federal Trade Commission for violating an agreement with the agency to protect user privacy.

To find out if your personal information was leaked in the breach, you can check the data tracking tool at HaveIBeenPwnd. Its creator Troy Hunt has updated the website with the latest data from the Facebook leak. Hunt said that 65% of the latest data has already been added to the tracker from previous leaks.

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