Facebook says hackers accessed data from 29 million accounts

By Updated at 2018-10-12 17:50:55 +0000


NEW YORK (AP) — Facebook says hackers accessed data from 29 million accounts as part of the security breach disclosed two weeks ago.

The exact number hadn’t been known before. Originally Facebook said 50 million accounts could have been affected, but Facebook didn’t know if they had been misused.

The hackers accessed name, email addresses or phone numbers from those 29 million accounts. For 14 million of those accounts, hackers got even more data, such as hometown, birthdate, the last 10 places they checked into or 15 most recent searches. One million accounts were affected but hackers didn’t gain information. The social media service plans to send messages to people whose accounts were hacked.

Facebook says third-party apps and Facebook apps like WhatsApp and Instagram were unaffected by the breach.

Facebook deletes Russian firm's accounts over alleged data scraping

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Facebook has disabled dozens of accounts and profiles belonging to Russian database provider SocialDataHub for what it termed the unauthorized collection of user information, the social media giant said on Thursday.

Facebook said in a statement that SocialDataHub, which has previously provided analytical services to the Russian government, had violated its terms of use.

“As part of our efforts to protect people’s security, we have recently removed SocialDataHub’s accounts... because they were scraping people’s information,” it said.

“This is a violation of our terms of service, and we have disabled more than 66 of SDH’s accounts, profiles, pages, and apps from our service,” it added. “We expect to find and disable more.”

Russian businessman Artur Khachuyan, who set up SocialDataHub in 2015, told Reuters that the company had not violated any laws or Facebook’s rules. He said it had received a complaint from Facebook and was drawing up an official response.

The Facebook complaint seen by Reuters claims SocialDataHub and Fubutech, a company also set up by Khachuyan, are amongst other things providing state services with the means to identify people by analyzing social media users’ photographs.

In the letter, Facebook demands that SocialDataHub stop collecting user data and present a report by Oct. 12 detailing the data that has been collected by the company.

It also requested information about the parties to whom SocialDataHub had sold or handed out data.

Reporting by Maria Kolomychenko; Writing by Tom Balmforth and Polina Devitt; Editing by Jan Harvey