Facebook inquires data leaks from over 1 million accounts
Facebook will be releasing an inner research following the exposure by Czech blog writer Bogomil Shopov that data belonging to over one million Facebook customers was provided on the market for $5.
Shopov purchased the information, which included full names, email information and Facebook profile information URLs, examined it over, and found that some of the information is precise and that some of his friends’ information is also there.
After making the discovery public on his blog, he says that he was approached by Facebook. In a (recorded) phone call, they requested him to forward the information then eliminate the data file in his ownership, name the website from which he purchased it, eliminate “a few things from your website,” and keep the fact that they had the conversation secret.
“I agreed to send them the data and the website of course, for that was my purpose, he told later. “I asked if it was possible to tell what the problem was, after they finished the investigation, so that the users could protect themselves, but they they emphasized that it would be an internal investigation and they would not share any information with third parties.”
“Facebook is vigilant about protecting our users from those who would try to expose any form of user information. In this case, it appears someone has attempted to scrape information from our site and combine the information with data publicly available elsewhere on the web,” Facebook told about the situation for ars technica.
“We have dedicated security engineers and teams that look into, and take aggressive action on reports just like these. In addition to the engineering teams that build tools to block scraping we also have a dedicated enforcement team that seeks to identify those responsible for breaking our Terms and works with our Legal team to ensure appropriate consequences follow. We continue to investigate this specific individual.”
As Shopov said, the offer of the data came with an explanation about the fact that it contained only information about active users, mostly from the US, Canada, UK and Europe, and that it was gathered through multiple Facebook apps. The seller said he is an online marketer.