PRIVACY CONCERNS WITH FACEBOOK

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Experts urge users to secure accounts and passwords after breach exposes personal details of more than 500 million people


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The details of more than 500 million global Facebook users have sầu been found online in a massive sầu data breach. Photograph: Denis Charlet/AFP/Getty Images
The details of more than 500 million global Facebook users have sầu been found online in a massive sầu data breach. Photograph: Denis Charlet/AFP/Getty Images

Australians are being urged lớn secure their social media accounts after the details of more than 500 million global Facebook users were found online in a massive data breach.

The details published freely online included names, phone numbers, tin nhắn addresses, account IDs & btiện ích ios.

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In a statement, Facebook said the leaked information was old, và came from a problem it had resolved in 2019, but experts told Guardian Australia the data could still cause problems for users caught up in the breach.

So what might hackers vị with your info? How can you kiểm tra if your data was leaked? And what can you bởi to lớn protect yourself?


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How your information could be used

Dr Andrew Quodling, a researcher in governance of social truyền thông media platforms at the Queensl& University of Technology, said that the data could be used lớn gain access khổng lồ people’s Facebook accounts but also emails và accounts with other social truyền thông media sites.

Once a hacker has your gmail, they can try khổng lồ login into your accounts by pairing your gmail with simple passwords.

“People will take a sort of an easy run at simple hacks – try the top 100 most common passwords, and try khổng lồ get in with brute force,” he said. “So anyone using the password 123 on that các mục would be in trouble.”

How khổng lồ find out if your data was leaked

The quickest & easiest way lớn find out if your data has been leaked as part of a wider breach is to lớn check on websites run by security researchers.

One of the most popular and effective sầu of these sites is HaveIBeenPwned.com, a database maintained by security analyst Troy Hunt.

It only needs your tin nhắn, which it cross-references with more than 10bn accounts that have been breached in the past lớn find if your details were leaked online.

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It also has an option, for users khổng lồ check if their password has been compromised.

Unfortunately, it does not yet track phone numbers, which were the most common user field in the recent Facebook leak.

What lớn bởi vì if your data was breached

In any data breach, it’s important lớn ensure identity documents, such as driver’s licence và passport details, haven’t been compromised. If they have sầu, replace them immediately.

If your tin nhắn address was exposed, change your password for that account, & phối up two-factor authentication where possible.

To protect yourself in future, use a password manager – such as 1password, LastPass or Keeper. These are paid services which can generate long and difficult passwords for your accounts, and store them for you so you don’t have sầu khổng lồ rethành viên them.

But Dr Quodling warns that there is only so much users can bởi to prsự kiện their data being used, apart from just quitting the social media platforms altogether.

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“You could be profoundly security conscious and secure, and still get caught out by insufficient security practices at other organisations you rely on,” he said.

“The challenge is always how much of a risk are you personally willing to take?”