Facebook is reportedly suggesting that malicious browser extensions may be behind yet another data breach affecting users of the social media platform – this one involving at least 257,256 stolen profiles, including 81,208 that included private messages.
Journalists from the BBC, aided by researchers from Digital Shadows, began investigating the matter last September after seeing the accounts advertised on BlackHat SEO, an English-speaking internet forum. The seller, who went by the name “FBSaler,” offered to sell details from as many as 120 million Facebook accounts, while posting the 257,000+ profiles as a sample. (The researchers have expressed doubt that the perpetrator truly possesses 120 million accounts, and the original post has since been removed.)
A Nov. 2 Digital Shadows blog and BBC article confirmed that the posted dataset contains user names, addresses contact numbers, user interests and, in some cases, friends, groups and private messages. A large contingent of victims – 30 percent – are based in Ukraine, while nine percent reside in Russia. But users in the U.S., the U.K. and Brazil were also notably affected.
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