Posted: Alayna Pehrson|September 28th, 2018

Identity Theft

50 Million Users Put at Risk by Recent Facebook Data Breach (2018)


Facebook Tweet mail
blog post author image
Written by Alayna Pehrson
Alayna Okerlund is a Content Management Specialist for Best Company. She is proud of her journalism background and strives to create informative, interesting online content. Professionally, she plans to further develop her writing skills and continue building up her SEO knowledge base. When she's not working, she enjoys being in nature and trying new foods.

On Friday, Sept. 28, 2018, it was announced that Facebook experienced a data breach that exposed 50 million users' personal information and other data. The social media network discovered the breach within the same week. 

It appears the hackers responsible for the breach targeted Facebook's "view as" feature. This feature allows users to view their own account from the perspective of others and enhance their account privacy if wanted. Hackers, however, were able to exploit the vulnerabilities found within this feature's code and use it to steal access to user tokens. These tokens allow people to stay logged into the social media network for long periods of time. When hackers were able to get access to these tokens, they were able to basically control and take over user accounts. 

Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook CEO, said the attackers responsible for the data breach used "Facebook developer API's to obtain some information like 'name, gender, and hometowns' that are linked to a user's profile page", according to Tech Crunch.

To prevent further exposure and damage, Facebook logged about 90 million users out of their Facebook accounts on Friday. Facebook officials and law enforcement are still working on investigating the data breach.

Those who are worried about the Facebook data breach can check if they were affected by logging back into their Facebook account and going to the security and login page. Once on the security and login page, users should see only the devices they've used to log into their account. 

Facebook has recently been in the public eye for a variety of user security concerns. The social media network has more than one billion active monthly users and, as such, stores a mass amount of personal information and data. According to The New York Times, "Facebook insists that it has instituted strict data-sharing policies with third parties, and has scaled back the amount of data it agrees to share with developers. The company suspended access to more than 400 third-party apps after an audit of the thousands of outside apps connected to Facebook." 

Although there are steps users can take to prevent putting their personal security at risk, there is no way to ensure complete data security. Those worried about potential data breaches in the future should be cautious with the amount of information they give out and should consider getting professional identity theft protection services. 

Compare the top ranked companies

Find the right company for you.

LifeLock image #1
Complete ID image #2
IdentityIQ image #3
MyIDCare image #4
LegalShield IDShield image #5
IdentityForce image #6 View

Learn More About The Top Identity Theft Companies

company logo
#1 LifeLock chevron_right
8.1 Overall Score
company logo
#2 Complete ID chevron_right
7.5 Overall Score
company logo
#3 IdentityIQ chevron_right
7.5 Overall Score

Related Articles

Card image cap
Protect Your Computer from Viruses, Hacker...

Guest Post by Jessica Walker With increasing cybersecurity threats, security measures to protect your computer from vir...

Read More
Card image cap
Why Millennials Are More at Risk for Fraud...

Guest Post by Kayla Matthews When it comes to scams and identity theft, we tend to think of senior citizens, some of soc...

Read More
Card image cap
How Much Could a Data Breach Cost Your Bus...

Guest Post by Kerry HarrisonIt seems that a day does not go by without news of a data breach. From small local businesse...

Read More