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Facebook data on more than 500M accounts found online

  • ANDY TULLIS/THE BULLETIN VIA AP / 2013
                                Chuck Goolsbee, site director for Facebook’s Prineville data centers, shows the computer servers that store users’ photos and other data at the Facebook site in Prineville Ore. Details from more than 500 million Facebook users have been found available on a website for hackers. The information appears to be several years old, but it is another example of the vast amount of information collected by Facebook and other social media sites, and the limits to how secure that information is.

    ANDY TULLIS/THE BULLETIN VIA AP / 2013

    Chuck Goolsbee, site director for Facebook’s Prineville data centers, shows the computer servers that store users’ photos and other data at the Facebook site in Prineville Ore. Details from more than 500 million Facebook users have been found available on a website for hackers. The information appears to be several years old, but it is another example of the vast amount of information collected by Facebook and other social media sites, and the limits to how secure that information is.

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS / 2018
                                A full-page advertisement in The New York Times displayed in New York. Details from more than 500 million Facebook users have been found available on a website for hackers. The information appears to be several years old, but it is another example of the vast amount of information collected by Facebook and other social media sites, and the limits to how secure that information is.

    ASSOCIATED PRESS / 2018

    A full-page advertisement in The New York Times displayed in New York. Details from more than 500 million Facebook users have been found available on a website for hackers. The information appears to be several years old, but it is another example of the vast amount of information collected by Facebook and other social media sites, and the limits to how secure that information is.

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS / 2018
                                Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg delivers the keynote speech at F8, Facebook’s developer conference in San Jose, Calif. Details from more than 500 million Facebook users have been found available on a website for hackers. The information appears to be several years old, but it is another example of the vast amount of information collected by Facebook and other social media sites, and the limits to how secure that information is.

    ASSOCIATED PRESS / 2018

    Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg delivers the keynote speech at F8, Facebook’s developer conference in San Jose, Calif. Details from more than 500 million Facebook users have been found available on a website for hackers. The information appears to be several years old, but it is another example of the vast amount of information collected by Facebook and other social media sites, and the limits to how secure that information is.

NEW YORK >> The personal data of more than half a billion Facebook Inc. users reemerged online for free today, a reminder of the company’s ability to collect mountains of information and its struggles to protect these sensitive assets.

The leak includes personal information on 533 million Facebook users, such as phone numbers, Facebook IDs, full names, locations, birth dates, bios and in some cases email addresses, Business Insider reported.

“This is old data that was previously reported on in 2019,” a Facebook spokesperson wrote in an email statement. “We found and fixed this issue in August 2019.”

At the time, the company addressed a flaw in its technology that allowed the information to leak out. However, once such data escapes from Facebook’s network, the company has limited power to stop it from spreading online.

Alon Gal, chief technology officer of cybercrime intelligence firm Hudson Rock, discovered the data again on Saturday. It’s available for free on a hacking forum, making it widely available to anyone with rudimentary data skills, Business Insider said.

Data leaks threaten to undermine Facebook’s business model of gathering a large amount of personal information and using that to sell targeted ads.

UNDERSTANDING THE FACEBOOK-CAMBRIDGE ANALYTICA STORY: QUICKTAKE

Business Insider verified several records by matching known Facebook users’ phone numbers with the IDs listed, and confirmed other records by testing email addresses from the data set in Facebook’s password reset feature, which can be used to partially reveal a user’s phone number.

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