Facebook said this afternoon 50 million user accounts have been affected by a security breach.
The company discovered the problem and says hackers exploited the “View As” feature on the service. Facebook says it has taken steps to fix the security problem and alerted law enforcement. They don’t know who’s behind the attack or whether your information has been misused.
Guy Rosen, VP of Product Management posted these details:
“Our investigation is still in its early stages. But it’s clear that attackers exploited a vulnerability in Facebook’s code that impacted “View As”, a feature that lets people see what their own profile looks like to someone else. This allowed them to steal Facebook access tokens which they could then use to take over people’s accounts. Access tokens are the equivalent of digital keys that keep people logged in to Facebook so they don’t need to re-enter their password every time they use the app.
We have reset the access tokens of the almost 50 million accounts we know were affected to protect their security. We’re also taking the precautionary step of resetting access tokens for another 40 million accounts that have been subject to a “View As” look-up in the last year. As a result, around 90 million people will now have to log back into Facebook, or any of their apps that use Facebook Login. After they have logged back in, people will get a notification at the top of their News Feed explaining what happened.
There’s no need for anyone to change their passwords. But people who are having trouble logging back into Facebook — for example because they’ve forgotten their password — should visit our Help Center. And if anyone wants to take the precautionary action of logging out of Facebook, they should visit the “Security and Login” section in settings. It lists the places people are logged into Facebook with a one-click option to log out of them all.”