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Monday, April 12, 2021

Facebook data leak. The Financial Ombudsman warns of hacker attacks

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Facebook has leaked information about over half a billion users, including over two million Poles. This data can become a tool for identity theft or breach of other security measures, warns the Financial Ombudsman. He adds that everyone should make a habit of protecting personal data.

Among the data of 533 million Facebook users that appeared a few days ago on the hacker forum on the Internet, there were also data of nearly 2.7 million users from Poland – the Financial Ombudsman recalled.


As the Ombudsman informs, there are names, telephone numbers, addresses of residence, as well as shared locations, dates of birth, biographies, account creation dates or relationship status, and sometimes also e-mail addresses. “Such a large database of information can be used by criminals to attack using social engineering techniques or attempt to break into other profiles or accounts, including bank accounts” – warns the spokesman.

“May contain malware”

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This data – in his opinion – can be used as a tool for identity theft or breaking other security measures. That is why he recommends taking appropriate steps now and creating a habit of protecting personal data by each of us.

He reminds that a phone call from a stranger may come from a fraudster and even if the calling person gives us our data to authenticate contact, it may come from a leak. “We should also pay more attention to e-mail and SMS messages we receive from strangers, which may also contain malicious software used for fraud or theft” – advises the Defender.

He noted that leaked e-mail addresses could allow fraudsters to impersonate real organizations, including the banks where our accounts are located. He also drew attention to the significant risk of the theft of funds from a bank account. “In order to minimize the occurrence of this risk, it is worth checking whether we use strong authentication in the bank for all possible types of activities” – he wrote.

“Let’s be vigilant”

A spokesman wrote that one of the most common forms of attack is a message to update your confidential data. Another form of fraud is the so-called “surcharge” fraud involving the impersonation of couriers, energy companies, bailiffs or offices in order to persuade you to pay by clicking on a link leading to a fake payment gateway. “Be vigilant if you receive such a link. It will be much safer to enter the bank’s website address in your browser or use the tab you created early on your own” – he warned.

The Financial Ombudsman reminded that in the event of an unauthorized payment transaction, this fact should be immediately reported to the bank together with the request for a refund, and a parallel notification of the possibility of committing a crime to the nearest police unit should be submitted.

“In accordance with the current legal status, the bank should return the amount of the unauthorized transaction to the customer’s account no later than by the end of the business day following the finding of the unauthorized transaction or after receiving the customer’s notification.” He also emphasized that in the era of increasingly common identity theft fraud, it is worth presenting your data online with caution.

Data of Facebook users from Poland

Like a couple of days ago from Konkret24, one of the users of a little-known hacking forum published the data of 533 million Facebook users from 106 countries, including Poland. Be the first to know about a leak Alon Gal reported on April 3 on Twitter, cybersecurity specialist. Names, telephone numbers, e-mail addresses, gender, marital status, occupation, place of residence leaked. The dataset does not contain passwords or private messages. It is available for free.

Alon Gal told Reuters Agencythat the database appears to contain the same set of Facebook-related phone numbers that has been circulating on hacker forums since January. In a statement, Facebook said the data was “very old” and the leak was related to a bug already fixed by the company in August 2019.

According to the Polish website Niebezpiecznik.pl among the data disclosed, over 2 million concern Poles. In this group, nearly 22 thousand. e-mail addresses. According to experts from Niebezpiecznik, the leak does not pose a direct threat to Polish users, but more phishing attacks can be expected in the coming days.

The data of 533 million users has just leaked from Facebook, wrote Alon Gal on Twitter on April 3Twitter

Main photo source: Shutterstock

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