SecurityBrief Asia logo
Asia's leading source of cybersecurity and cyber-attack news
Story image

Experts comment on Facebook’s 50 million user credential leak

By Kai Ping Lew
Mon 1 Oct 2018
FYI, this story is more than a year old

Earlier today, Facebook announced that a bug discovered on September 25 in their View As feature compromised the authentication tokens of almost 50 million users.

The data leak is one of the biggest security breaches at Facebook to date and could have far-reaching implications for Facebook users who have used its messaging service, Messenger, to communicate sensitive information.

Techday spoke to security experts who commented on the breach.

Barracuda Networks technology evangelist Greg Annette says, “Every new breach further proves that the public needs to preserve and protect their own cloud data because the providers are not.

“Free services like Facebook are even less likely to care about user data protection, so the public must take ownership in protecting and preserving data.

Annette says, “According to recent data, 78% of account takeover incidents result in a phishing email, with the goal of infecting additional accounts, via user impersonation. In order to protect themselves, the public should implement a few baseline proactive measures, including:

  • Back up data in a controlled environment. This will allow you to recover any deleted or compromised items.
  • Use unique passwords for all services, and where appropriate, use a password manager.
  • Enable multi-factor (MFA) or two-factor authentication (2FA) for any and all cloud-based accounts. While you should take personal steps to enable MFA and 2FA, you should also demand these authentication protocols from your vendor if they’re not automatically provided.

Darktrace Asia Pacific managing director Sanjay Aurora says, “While we may never understand the attacker’s motivations, it is important to realise that incentives are endless in this new era of cyber warfare.”

“In order to bypass Facebook’s security controls without raising alarm bells, this attack would have had to be complex, sophisticated, and stealthy. Complex attacks have many moving parts that often appear as individual, subtle anomalies hiding within the noise of the network.

“Attacks like this will only continue to threaten our organizations, and we have to assume that it will only get harder and harder to detect.  

"This is where technologies rooted in AI will be paramount. AI is capable of sifting through large amounts of data and lines of code to identify these subtle patterns, and what’s more, it is intelligent enough to determine how to contain the threat as it’s emerging in real time.

“We live our lives in a maze of interconnectivity, and the more we connect, the more risk we adopt into our lives and networks.

Sophos principal research scientist Chester Wisniewski says, “In something as big and complicated as Facebook, there are bound to be bugs.

“As with any social media platform, users should assume their information may be made public, through hacking or simply through accidental oversharing. This is why sensitive information should never be shared through these platforms. For now, logging out and back in is all that is necessary.

“The truly concerned should use this as a reminder and an opportunity to review all of their security and privacy settings on Facebook and all other social media platforms they share personal information with.”

RedLock cloud security VP Matt Chiodi says, “Facebook's recent “View As” vulnerability underscores the level of persistence on the part of attackers.

“If there’s a high enough value target, they will get in sooner or later. Facebook today employs over 10,000 cybersecurity professionals. No system or application is 100% secure.

“What's most intriguing is that despite a formal bug bounty program, the vulnerability has been present in Facebook code since July of 2017. It’s hard to believe that a vulnerability of this size would persist this long undetected.”

Forcepoint chief scientist Richard Ford says, “Facebook’s fast reaction time is a sign of the growing maturity around breach response that we’re starting to see as GDPR comes into effect.

“Understanding, if there was a pattern to the impacted accounts versus just random selection, is the difference between someone trying to hack the system for fun or a coordinated nation-state attack that compromises specific users to ultimately gain access to sensitive data.

“This breach illustrates a fundamental truth of the new digital economy: when I share my personal data with a company I am putting my trust in your ability to protect that data adequately.

“Users need to continually evaluate the type of data they share and the potential impact a breach of that data could cause, to become an active participant in protecting their own online identities.

“On the other side, companies need to avail themselves of proactive technologies such as behavioural analysis to hold up their end of the bargain.”

Related stories
Top stories
Story image
Cybersecurity
Verizon supports Fujifilm's cybersecurity advancements
Verizon Business is supporting Japan’s Fujifilm Holdings to strengthen its global cybersecurity monitoring and cyber intelligence capabilities.
Story image
Cryptocurrency
Crypto crime: Illicit activity falls with rest of market
Cryptocurrency scams, which typically present themselves as passive crypto investing opportunities, are less enticing to potential victims.
Story image
Radware
DDoS activity rises dramatically - Radware report
The first six months of 2022 were marked by a significant increase in DDoS activity across the globe, according to a new report.
Story image
Cloud Security
Aqua Security adds CPSM capabilities to Aqua Trivy
Aqua Security has added cloud security posture management (CPSM) capabilities to its open source tool, Aqua Trivy.
Story image
Cybersecurity
‘Windows shops’ target admin rights to de-risk their environments
New data shows up to 75% of critical vulnerabilities could be mitigated through a rights and privileges crackdown
Story image
Gartner
Fortinet attributes Gartner-reported growth to ZTNA approach
Zero-trust is slowly becoming a dominant enterprise security strategy for businesses, and the Gartner report highlights that although prominent, it is often underutilised.
Story image
Mobiles
Demand grows for future-proof mobile access solutions
HID Global, in partnership with IFSEC Global, recently released the 2022 State of Physical Access Control report for the fourth year running.
Story image
scam
Classiscam threat expands to target leading platforms in Singapore
Researchers at Group-IB have uncovered that Classiscam, a sophisticated scam-as-a-service operation, has expanded to Singapore.
Story image
Cloud Security
Tenable makes additions to Cloud Security portfolio
Tenable has announced additions to Tenable Cloud Security that represent the next step in assessing threats related to cloud vulnerabilities.
Story image
Gartner Magic Quadrant
Gartner names Lookout a Visionary in 2022 Magic Quadrant
Gartner has recognised Lookout as a Visionary in the 2022 Magic Quadrant for Security Service Edge (SSE) and one of the top three offerings in the 2022 Gartner Critical Capabilities for SSE report.
Story image
Government
Mandiant researchers uncover significant new disinformation campaign
Researchers from Mandiant say they have uncovered a significant disinformation campaign from the Chinese Government in the wake of U.S. Speaker Nancy Pelosi's visit to Taiwan.
Story image
Collaboration
Schneider Electric launches Connected Services with Claroty
Schneider Electric is teaming up with Claroty to assist in maintaining cybersecurity for physical assets - a critical issue.
Story image
Privileged Access Management / PAM
The importance of stopping identity sprawl for cybersecurity
The 2021 Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR) shows that 61% of all breaches involve malicious actors gaining unauthorised, privileged access to data by using a compromised credential. Unfortunately, it is often too late when the misuse of a credential is detected.
Story image
DevOps
Dynatrace extends application security capabilities for runtime environments
Dynatrace has announced that it has extended its Application Security Module to detect and protect against vulnerabilities in runtime environments.
Story image
Cybersecurity
Claroty research unveils new attack that targets PLCs
Claroty has released research detailing a new type of cyber-attack, one that weaponises programmable logic controllers (PLCs).
Story image
Machine learning
Sysdig releases CDR offering to combat cryptojacking
Sysdig has unveiled a cloud detection and response (CDR) offering powered by machine learning to combat cryptojacking.
Story image
Cybersecurity
CISOs need to consider a risk-based cybersecurity strategy
Rather than talking in terms of attack vectors and vulnerabilities, CISOs and security decision-makers must look at actual business risk.
Story image
Gaming
Attacks on gaming companies more than double over past year
The State of the Internet report shows gaming companies and gamer accounts are at risk, following a surge in web application attacks post pandemic.
AWS Marketplace
Learn how security orchestration, automation, and response (SOAR) enhances your security strategy.
Link image
Story image
Cloud Security
Lookout named Strong Performer in 2022 Gartner Peer Insights
Gartner has recognised Lookout as a Strong Performer in the 2022 Gartner Peer Insights Voice of the Customer for Security Service Edge (SSE).
AWS Marketplace
Watch this webinar to gain building blocks for data mesh, and how AWS customers today are successfully enabling domain driven data.
Link image
Story image
Data analytics
Pressure on orgs to up their data analytics game - study
A recent report from Sisense highlights data transmission, analysis, and risk management remain top concerns for data professionals in APAC.
Story image
Cybersecurity
Education sector seeing highest volumes of cyber attacks
When breaking down the numbers to education attacks by region in July 2022, A/NZ was the most heavily attacked.
Story image
Data Protection
Safeguarding your financial data
As the digital revolution marches on, managing data security has never been more important. Here are five important steps to take toward better financial data security.
Story image
Collaboration
Lacework launches new capabilities for better threat detection
Lacework has announced new capabilities that enable organisations to uncover more critical threats to their infrastructure and empower teams.
Story image
Dark web
Beware the darkverse and its cyber-physical threats
A darkverse of criminality hidden from law enforcement could quickly evolve to fuel a new industry of metaverse-related cybercrime.
Story image
VMware
Latest VMware threat report reveals truth about deepfakes
"Cyber criminals have evolved. Their new goal is to use deepfake technology to compromise organisations and gain access to their environment."
Story image
Microsoft
8x more users attacked via old Microsoft Office vulnerability in Q2
"Criminals craft malicious documents and convince their victims to open them through social engineering techniques."
AWS Marketplace
Whitepaper: A practical guide for mitigating risk in today’s modern applications
Link image
Story image
Microsoft
Avast reveals zero-day exploits targeting Chrome and Microsoft
Avast, released its Q2/2022 Threat Report today, revealing a significant increase in global ransomware attacks, up 24% from Q1/2022.
Story image
Artificial Intelligence
Concentric AI protects sensitive data with new capabilities
The new capability reveals sensitive data shared across email and business messaging platforms and highlights who has inappropriate access to content.
Story image
Ransomware
Sophos reveals latest ransomware trend impacting orgs
Sophos has announced in a new whitepaper that Hive, LockBit and BlackCat, three prominent ransomware gangs, consecutively attacked the same network.
Story image
IDC
High level of Customer Identity & Access Management adoption
The study from Okta revealed that the pandemic has either accelerated or highlighted the need for digital-first strategies.
Story image
Data Protection
Zero Trust, but verify - finding the OT in ZerO Trust
The move to remote and cloud-based technologies has shifted the goalposts for cybersecurity. It now needs to cover multiple people, devices, platforms, and networks.
Story image
ExtraHop
Organisations exposing highly sensitive protocols to public internet
More than 60% of organisations expose remote control protocol SSH to the public internet, while 36% of organisations expose the insecure FTP protocol.
Story image
Email scams
HelpSystems shines light on impact of response-based threats
Response-based attacks targeting corporate inboxes have climbed to their highest volume since 2020, representing 41% of all email-based scams.
Story image
Cyber attacks
Dramatic uptick in threat activity with exploits growing nearly 150%
"While it’s not a surprise given increased attack opportunities like remote work, it’s still a worrying development and one we cannot ignore."
Story image
Biometrics
Can biometrics help? 123% increase in Gen Zs scammed online
In the three years leading up to 2022, the number of Gen Zs who fell victim to online scams rose by 123%, according to Ping Identity.
Story image
Malware
Kaspersky uncovers new attacks by advanced persistent threat group
The attacks involved modifications of the well-known malware, DTrack, as well as the use of a brand-new Maui ransomware.
Story image
Facial recognition
Benefits vs risks of facial recognition technology
Once a distant, futuristic concept, facial recognition technology is now found in many technological applications with a variety of different functions.