Facebook data leak

It would seem to be that there is a new hack, breach or scam nearly every week. Unfortunately this morning is no different, as there has been a new Facebook hack.

What Happened?

According to TechCrunch, an exposed server containing over 400 million user records was available online. The server was not password protected, meaning that it was accessible to anyone. Of the 419 million users involved in this Facebook hack, 133 million are in the United States, with 18 million in the UK. It’s unknown at this point if Irish users have been affected.

What Information was Available?

Well, a significant amount. Each individual record contained a unique Facebook user ID number. That ID number has a phone number linked to it. Facebook phone numbers haven’t been accessible in over a year. But, it is reported that many of the affected profiles are currently live. Other information accessed included user location, gender and name in some instances.

What Are Facebook Saying?

As you can imagine, Facebook are playing it down. They have confirmed the breach. But they have said that the number of users affected is around half of the reported 419 million. Facebook are also saying that the data is old, and a lot of the information is duplicated. A spokesperson for Facebook has said that “the dataset has been taken down and we have seen no evidence that Facebook accounts were compromised.

This is the latest Facebook hack in a list of incidents. Last year, a Facebook hack affected 50 million users, including a number of Irish users.

What is the Impact of this latest Facebook Hack?

For anyone who has had their information compromised, it could be huge. Anyone who has had their phone number exposed are open to many concerns. These include spam calls, sim swaps, or resetting profile passwords associated with the phone number. For Irish users, it’s hard to guage the potential impact of this latest Facebook hack. It’s not known yet if any Irish users have been affected.

What Can I Do to Protect my Profile?

Given that there is a history of Facebook hacks, you should take some steps to protect your information online. Head to your contacts and basic info page on your Facebook profile. Check if the information there is needed. If it’s not, delete it.

Review your information on Facebook, and delete anything that you don’t need.
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Gary is a leading tech expert with loads of experience around the latest gadgets on the market. He's also an avid movie fan and Fantasy Football guru.