Medical Tuesday Blog

Fifty Million Facebook Users had their Personal Data Compromised

Oct 14

Written by: Del Meyer
10/14/2018 1:37 PM 

“We have a responsibility to protect your data and if we can’t then we don’t deserve to serve you”
—Mark Zuckerberg

Well said, Mark, after you enticed 2 billion naïve persons to sign up, give you their personal information, FREE, and you sell that confidential information to the highest bidder, have these naïve kids spread it to their friends, ask them to “like” as if they were still in grade school, and you make your $billions.

The breach was the latest setback for the world’s largest social network. After being investigated for improperly sharing data with Cambridge Analytica in the 2016 elections and is now defunct and in the throes of the 2018 elections. Facebook was still contending with the fallout from this scandal in which a British consulting firm improperly harvested the personal data of up to 87 million Facebook users.

Deepa Seetharaman and Robert McMillan reported in the WSJ on Sept 29th reported that an additional 40 million accounts had to also be reset. . .  Still the breach gave hackers access to information that could be used in identity theft. The authentication tokens can be used to log in to web sites outside of Facebook itself. The WSJ also reported that on Monday, the two co-founders of its popular Instagram app abruptly resigned after they clashed with Mr. Zuckerberg over the app’s autonomy. Similar issues led the co-founders of Facebook’s Whats-App to depart.

Mike Isaac and Sheera Frenkel, in the NY Times, state that Facebook has 2 billion monthly users, 2 billion monthly users of the WhatsApp, a Facebook-owned messaging app, and Instagram, the Facebook-owned photo-sharing app. Facebook also suspended access to more than 400 third-party apps after an audit of the thousands of outside apps connected to Facebook.

Louise Matsakis And Issie Lapowsky In Security And Marlene Awaad/Bloomberg/Getty Images Reported In later on friday, that Facebook also confirmed that third-party sites that those users logged into with their Facebook accounts could also be affected. . .  Facebook may also face unprecedented scrutiny in Europe, where the new General Data Protection Regulation, or GDPR, requires companies to disclose a breach to a European agency within 72 hours of it occurring. In cases of high risk to users, the regulation also requires that they be notified directly. Facebook says it has notified the Irish Data Protection Commission about the issue.

This is the second security vulnerability that Facebook has disclosed in recent months. In June, the company announced it had discovered a bug that made up to 14 million people’s posts publicly viewable to anyone for days. This is the first time in Facebook’s history, though, that users’ entire accounts may have been compromised by outside hackers. Its response to this vulnerability—and the speed and comprehensiveness of the important disclosures ahead—will likely be of serious importance. Once again, all eyes are on Mark Zuckerberg.


Editor comment: My name and photo were placed in Facebook by a loving niece some decades ago. I have never utilized the mechanism of giving Zuckerberg any personal information that he could sell for profit. Every week I still get messages from cousins, nieces, nephews and in-laws, to view their new posting, pictures, and news of no professional interest. I have nieces who formerly had a locked diary which they only shared with close friends in the confines of their bedroom and the diary was immediately re-locked and returned to a safe place. These girls have now given up their locked diaries and placed all this very personal information on line for the world to see. This very private information has been sold by Mark Zuckerberg to his two billion followers like the Pied Piper leading the unsuspecting children into the cavern by the sea. Why don’t we all disenroll before the cavern sucks us all into its innards as Mark Zuckerberg takes his next load of $billions to the bank!

When, lo! as they reached the mountain-side,
A wondrous portal opened wide,
As if a cavern was suddenly hollowed;
And the Piper advanced and the children followed,
And when all were in to the very last,
The door in the mountain-side shut fast.

Robert Browning, The Pied Piper of Hamelin: A Child’s Story



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