Facebook says 14m accounts had personal data stolen in recent breach

Figurines are seen in front of the Facebook logo in this illustration

Facebook didn't respond to a request for comment, and Rosen declined to provide specific details on the attackers because the FBI is investigating the breach.

Of that number, 15 million users had their name and contact info (phone number and/or email) compromised while another 14 million lost that and their gender, Facebook username, location, language, relationship status, hometown, religion, current area of residence, birthdate, devices used to access Facebook, work, education, and more.

"We now know that fewer people were impacted than we originally thought". For 15 million, the cyberthieves only accessed name and contact information. While he declined to say what Facebook officials know about the attackers or their motivations for stealing the data, he said Facebook has no reason to believe the hack had any connection to the midterm elections scheduled for next month.

Still, hackers neither accessed personal messages nor financial data and did not use Facebook logins to access other websites, all of which would have been a cause for greater concern.

Facebook says third-party apps and Facebook apps like WhatsApp and Instagram were unaffected by the breach.

The company said users' credit card information was not exposed.

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For those initial victims, the attackers could see timeline posts, friend lists, what groups people were members of, and whom people had recently sent messages to.

He declined to discuss progress regarding figuring out who was behind the attack, saying Facebook had been asked by the Federal Bureau of Investigation to remain quiet on the topic.

"Today's update from Facebook is significant now that it is confirmed that the data of millions of users was taken by the perpetrators of the attack", the Irish Data Protection Commission wrote on Twitter. The attackers began with a relatively small number of accounts that they directly controlled, exploiting flaws in the platform's "View As" feature to gain access to other users' profiles. The Mark Zuckerberg-led company also said it was taking the precautionary measure of resetting access tokens for another 40 million accounts that were "subject to a "View As" look-up in the a year ago", bringing the total to 90 million accounts who will now have to log back into the service.

Facebook is working alongside the FBI, and according to remarks by Vice President of Product Management Guy Rosen, the agency's investigation appears to be ongoing. Facebook discovered the attack September 25. The Register asked Facebook whether it intends to pay for identity theft monitoring for the 30 million people affected, a common act of contrition following data thefts.

On Friday, the data gathering biz said a mere 30 million people were robbed of their authentication tokens.

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