A low-level hacking platform user leaked the personal data of 533 million Facebook users Saturday, 32 million of which are from the United States.
The exposed information reportedly contains the social media users’ phone numbers, Facebook IDs, full names, locations, birthdates, bios, and — in certain cases — email addresses, according to Business Insider.
All 533,000,000 Facebook records were just leaked for free.
This means that if you have a Facebook account, it is extremely likely the phone number used for the account was leaked.
— Alon Gal (Under the Breach) (@UnderTheBreach) April 3, 2021
The data is believed to be authentic, as Business Insider has verified it by matching Facebook ID’s of known users with those listed in the leaked database, according to the report. (RELATED: Facebook Is Allowing China To Buy Ads Depicting ‘Thriving’ Uyghurs In Xinjiang, Alarming Employees)
The system vulnerability which enabled the hackers to scrape the data was fixed back in 2019, so the database is a couple of years old, a Facebook spokesperson told the outlet. This, however, does not mean ill-intended hackers cannot put the disclosed information to use.
“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, CTO of cybercrime intelligence firm Hudson Rock, told the Insider.
The multi-billion social media giant has previously vowed to address mass data-scraping after Cambridge Analytica got hold of the data of 80 million users in violation of Facebook’s terms of service in the run-up to the 2016 election.