Facebook reported on Friday a breach affected 50 million people on the social network. A blog post on Facebook security blog stated that an engineering team on Tuesday, Sept 25 discovered a breach affected 50 million people on the social network.
Facebook is taking this breach seriously and wants to inform everyone about the breach and take preventive steps to protect people’s security.
The latest breach is caused by Facebook’s “View As” feature. This feature allows users to view their profiles as it will be viewed by other people. The hackers have managed to compromise the codes associated with the feature, which allows them to take control of the “access tokens”. These access tokens can be used to take over people’s accounts.
With the help of access tokens, you can log into accounts without the need of a password, this makes it a bit scary. As a preventive measure, Facebook has forcefully logged out 90 million users out of their Facebook accounts.
According to Facebook the attack was discovered earlier this week and was reported to the law enforcement agencies. The investigations are in preliminary stages and it is still not clear who is behind these attacks.
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Mark Zuckerberg, CEO, Facebook said “We face constant attacks from people who want to take over accounts or steal information around the world. While I’m glad we found this, fixed the vulnerability, and secured the accounts that may be at risk, the reality is we need to continue developing new tools to prevent this from happening in the first place.”
Earlier today there was an incident where a white hat hacker from Taiwan threatened to go live with the deletion of Mark Zuckerberg Facebook account. Still, Facebook is recovering from the Cambridge Analytica scandal in March, where personal information of 87 million Facebook users was harvested by an UK-based digital consultancy.
There is a possibility of the vulnerability reported coming from a change issued in July 2017, when Facebook adjusted how people could upload videos. Investigations are in progress and still, Facebook is not sure how much data has been stolen or who is behind the attack.
Facebook has assured its users need not change the security settings as it was an attack carried out via the access token and not passwords.
For those of you who are not aware of access tokens, they are a set of code that is granted to a user after logging in for the first time. Used mostly across websites so that you don’t have to log back in every time you go to a page. Generally, when you log in to your Facebook, the access tokens are used to allow a secure access without needing a password.
Guy Rosen, Facebook vice president of product management, said – “People’s privacy and security is incredibly important, and we’re sorry this happened. It’s why we’ve taken immediate action to secure these accounts and let users know what happened.”
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