Facebook has been in the crosshairs of most privacy watchdogs ever since the infamous Cambridge-Analytica data scandal. This time, the company is facing flak as data of 533 million FB users was recently posted online on a low level hacking forum for free. This personal user data includes names, mobile numbers, email ids, country, city, along with more sensitive information.
Couldn’t let sleeping dogs lie
The latest massive data leak of Facebook’s user information is actually not that recent. The social media website tells Insider that it is data scraped back in 2019, soon after which they claim to have fixed the vulnerability. The data was posted on a forum for free and has been verified online to reveal that it is actually a real data leak.
The massive trove of user data reportedly fetched $30,000 (approx £21,784) when it was first sold online. It has now been posted by a member of the aforementioned forum for free to gain some site ‘credits,’ which is apparently some form of currency on the forum. Data sold online at high prices could be resold later at a lowered price or made available publicly like the current case, for earning some reputation amongst hackers.
Check if you’ve been Pwned
The data leak this time was shot primarily into the limelight since it contains phone numbers of Facebook users. To check if your data is amongst the leaked info, head over to Have I Been Pwned?. The site digs through numerous leaked databases to find out whether your information has been sold or made available online. The website was founded by Troy Hunt, who is a regional director for Microsoft in Australia and is quite reliable to use.
To search, simply enter your phone number in the international format, in the search bar. For UK users, it will be something like +445511223344. In case your search returns positive, we suggest you immediately change the password you’re using to access your Facebook account and if you’re using the same password somewhere else, it’s better to change it there as well.
Hunt has also added email addresses from the breach to his website, so you can check the same for your email id as well.