Facebook data breach aftermath: how to protect yourself

This is a stock image of a man pointing to a smartphone with the Facebook logo on display.

On Sept. 28, 2018, Facebook experienced the largest data breach in its history, allowing hackers access to approximately 50 million users’ accounts. The attackers exploited bugs in the “view as” feature, which gave them access and potential control of the accounts.

In most cases of a data breach, it is difficult to tell whose credentials were compromised and what kind of personal information was leaked. With Facebook, the breach may have even affected third-party applications that use the Facebook Login; this is still unconfirmed.

Take precautions following a hack

In the event of a data breach, it is always recommended that you change your password and change your recovery questions. In cases like Facebook, your account name is usually your email address, so it’s recommended that you change the password and recovery questions of your Facebook account and also of your email account associated with it.

It is also important to remember that a breach in one social network may compromise another, and will if you use the same password and account name. If you re-use passwords, or you cannot remember, change all your social media passwords and recovery questions. For example, a data breach at Facebook could compromise your Instagram account too. If you were affected, it’s wise to take extra precaution and change all your social media passwords and recovery questions.

October is Cyber Security Awareness Month. You can find more best practices for staying safe online by visiting Security Matters.