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Facebook flaw reveals some personal data from 6 million users

updated 09:20 pm EDT, Fri June 21, 2013

Data leaked collected from friend network address books, not own user data

Facebook's "White Hat" hacker program has exposed a vulnerability in the social network's "Download Your Information" tool. According to the company's security blog, a flaw allowed users (but not developers or advertisers) to farm phone numbers and email addresses attached to friended-users Facebook accounts.

The bug has been exploitable since the end of 2012. Six million users' data was potentially exposed. Security researchers Packet Storm Security summarized the problem, noting that it did not matter what data the user entered for themselves, but the data leaked was harvested from the users' friends. While the flaw was active, the information available (which was collected, and still resides, on Facebook servers) was sent to users requesting their own contact information on users friended on Facebook.

Facebook believes the impact of the security lapse will be minimal. Announcing the flaw, Facebook claims that "although the practical impact of this bug is likely to be minimal since any email address or phone number that was shared was shared with people who already had some of that contact information anyway, or who had some connection to one another, it's still something we're upset and embarrassed by, and we'll work doubly hard to make sure nothing like this happens again."



By Electronista Staff
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Comments

  1. And.reg

    Mac Elite

    Joined: 02-22-04

    How does Facebook manage to not get sued out of their boots umpteen times over for violating people's privacy?

  1. The Vicar

    Junior Member

    Joined: 07-01-09

    You could just make a template with this headline (with a blank for the number), and a blank for the paragraph giving details, and use it again and again. Heck, make the company name and description a blank, and you've got an even more useful one!

  1. prathibhanu

    MacNN Staff

    Joined: 06-08-13

    they do it again!

  1. prathibhanu

    MacNN Staff

    Joined: 06-08-13

    facebook is not safe anymore...

  1. prathibhanu

    MacNN Staff

    Joined: 06-08-13

    facebook is not safe anymore...

  1. Grendelmon

    Mac Enthusiast

    Joined: 12-26-07

    Someone wake me when the SpaceBook fad is finally dead.

  1. Spheric Harlot

    Clinically Insane

    Joined: 11-07-99

    Originally Posted by And.regView Post

    How does Facebook manage to not get sued out of their boots umpteen times over for violating people's privacy?



    They weren't *sued*, but were taken to court over violation of German privacy laws when they introduced automatic face-tagging for images. Which they then removed.

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