In a world where our lives reside online, are we really living in a safe space? Aren’t these social platforms endangering us with our data and personal pieces of information? Well, it appears that Facebook is threatening people’s lives and data by leaking secured information for free. 

Facebook has yet again become the centre of focus in privacy controversy as it breached and invaded 533 million Facebook user’s data across the world. Following a cybersecurity’s revelation- data of half a billion facebook’s users, including mobile numbers, email IDs, addresses were leaked online for free. It was claimed that it had been made available for a low-hacking forum. Information security experts assumed that the oozed data will be practised for cybercrimes by wicked players.

Is Facebook threatening 533 million Facebook users by leaking data and infringing on personal information?
Is Facebook threatening 533 million Facebook users by leaking data and infringing on personal information?

The accurate report stats suggest that 533 million Facebook users across 106 countries and data leaked amounts to a breach of over 32 million accounts in the US, 11 million in the UK, and 6 million in India were exposed. Reputably, the alleged Facebook data infringement isn’t new. Facebook has been clashing with data security issues for ages. 

Alon Gal, Chief Technology Officer of cyberintelligence outfit, Hudson Rock, took this to his Twitter account and revealed the breach of data in a series of tweets. ” All 533,000,000 Facebook records were first leaked for free. This means that if you have a Facebook account, it is extremely likely the phone numbers used for the account were leaked. I have yet to see Facebook acknowledging this absolute negligence of your data. ” 

Moreover, “the leaked data is a couple of years old, it could provide valuable information to cybercriminals. A database of that size containing the private information such as phone numbers of a lot of Facebook’s users would certainly lead to bad actors taking advantage of the data to perform social engineering attacks or hacking attempts,” Alon Gal tweeted who first noticed the leaked data online on Saturday.

A Facebook spokesperson said that the dripped data was discarded due to a vulnerability that the company repaired in 2019. A vulnerability was identified in 2019 that enabled phone numbers of millions of users to be scraped from Facebook servers. The social media atlas said that the vulnerability was covered in August 2019.

Back in January, and recently, Facebook ventured to convince its users that the security vulnerability was “old” and that it had been mended in August 2019. Nevertheless, as far as it covered, opting to implement no specifications on how the breach was amended. The data is considered to be more than a year old, but security experts say the information could still be used by criminals to commit identification scam.

This is far away from the prime time that Facebook has been the scapegoat of data piracy. Although the bulk data-scraping activity organised by Cambridge Analytica stated that the information of 80 million Facebook users disclosed in infringement of the social media platform’s terms of service, Facebook pledged to execute measures to decipher down on data theft. 

India requires a tool to castigate companies that are incompetent to handle user information. The country needs a sturdy law to administer such situations. 

Despite such frivolous situations, do note that Facebook has not issued an official statement yet and it is not certain if the data of users have been misused.