A database with details on around 533 million Facebook users from 106 countries was offered in a hacker forum.
Among the compromised information are mobile phone numbers, some emails, gender, occupation, city, country, and relationship status. Personal data leakage affects users in more than 106 countries, including — 13 million from Mexico, 10 million from Spain, 2 million from Argentina, 32 million the United States, 11 million UK, and 6 million from India.
A Facebook spokeswoman wrote about the incident on Twitter: “This is old data that was previously reported on in 2019. We found and fixed this issue in August 2019.”
The data was apparently picked up by scraping. A spokeswoman confirmed this at the request of Business Insider. According to the forum discussion, a corresponding data set was offered for sale in another forum for $99 in mid-March. But now, the data is free.
This leaked data can be very valuable, and especially very dangerous, in the wrong hands. Personal information is very useful for social engineering attacks, in which the hacker impersonates a friend, acquaintance, or even the victim to gain access to an account.
“It is very worrying to see a database of this size being sold in cybercrime communities, it is seriously damaging our privacy and is certainly being used by criminals for fraudulent activities,” said Alon Gal, co-founder, and CTO of security firm Hudson Rock, who works in January discovered the Telegram bot.