Saturday, 20 October, 2018

AFTER THE HACK: How you can protect your Facebook information

Were you one of the 90 million Facebook users who had to log back in to their Facebook accounts 123RFWere you one of the 90 million Facebook users who had to log back in to their Facebook accounts
| 02 October, 2018, 16:12

The Ministry of Electronics and IT has asked Facebook to quantify the impact on its users in India after hackers breached as many as 50 million accounts of the social network and third-party apps linked to those. Facebook said it still doesn't have a full picture of the incident and it's still investigating the breadth of the breach together with U.S. law enforcement agencies.

The company says it has now fixed the problem in its code and reset access tokens for those accounts - along with 40 million other accounts that were vulnerable to the flaw. Facebook has a "view as" feature that lets users see what their profile looks like when other people view them.

The social media giant is also now under scrutiny for having confessed to giving advertisers access to user's two factor authentication (2FA) details. The issue was found by its engineering team on Tuesday afternoon. "We do not yet know if any of the accounts were actually misused", Zuckerberg said.

The company then stated that the source of the vulnerability, the "View As" feature, has been disabled for the time being, adding that the feature became open to attack in July 2017 when Facebook edited its video uploading.

A spokesperson for the dating app Tinder said Monday that Facebook (FB) has shared only "limited information" and called on Facebook to be "transparent" about which of Tinder's users may have been affected.

To deal with the issue, Facebook reset some logins, so 90 million people have been logged out and will have to log in again. "As I've said before - the era of the Wild West in social media is over".


"Friday's disclosure is just the latest headache for Facebook, which has invested heavily in security measures following a series of privacy breaches and foreign meddling in the 2016 presidential election that have undercut its reputation and battered it on Wall Street", NASDAQ.com's Jon Swartz recounted.

"In order to bypass Facebook's security controls without raising alarm bells, this attack would have had to be complex, sophisticated, and stealthy".

This allowed them to steal Facebook access tokens which they could then use to take over people's accounts, the company said, explaining that access tokens are the equivalent of digital keys that keep people logged in to Facebook so they do not need to re-enter their password every time they use the app. If it's not, a cybercriminal could use the hacked account on one platform (in this case, Facebook), to access any other connected platform.

Personal information of 50 million accounts has been compromised according to Facebook, and they have taken the necessary steps to protect any further attack through the same mechanism. Two-factor authentication involves the use of a one-time password as you try to log into your account.

The year 2018 has been a tough sail for Facebook.

It's already known that hackers have made use a loophole in Facebook and stolen 5 Crore access tokens.

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