Pressure is mounting on Facebook to “tell all” over yet another mass data breach – which it is claimed has exposed the personal information of 210 million users – after the social media giant tried to dismiss the information as “old”.
The latest breach, discovered by a security researcher includes Facebook IDs, phone numbers and in some cases, each user’s full name.
There were 419 million records in total, but Facebook maintains many are duplicates, and old – from the times when Facebook let users search accounts by phone numbers – although with most people keeping their mobile numbers this could be irrelevant.
Some 18 million records are from the UK, although the majority, 133 million, are from US users and 50 million records are Vietnamese users. However, it still counts as one of the largest data breaches in history.
A Facebook spokesman said: “This data set is old and appears to have information obtained before we made changes last year to remove people’s ability to find others using their phone numbers. The data set has been taken down and we have seen no evidence that Facebook accounts were compromised.”
The Irish Data Protection Commission, which governs Facebook in the EU, has reportedly contacted the social media giant demanding further details.
Meanwhile, Wojciech Wiewiórowski, who is acting European Data Protection Supervisor following the death of Giovanni Buttarelli last month, said in a statement: “The biggest companies need to do more to protect the personal data of their users. It is a whole business model in use that needs to be scrutinised and streamlined with GDPR requirements and legal obligations.”
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