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July 3, 2013

Security Bug Exposes 6 Million Facebook Users' Information

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Last week, a breach in Facebook's security measures quite possibly could have leaked 6 million users contact information, including emails and telephone numbers. "When people upload their contact lists or address books to Facebook, we try to match that data with the contact information of other people on Facebook in order to generate friend recommendations," the security team wrote in a blog post. This security bug took information from people's contact lists and address books and inadvertently stored the contact information in the associated person's Facebook profile. Facebook recently released the "Download Your Information" tool, which allows users to download an archive of their entire Facebook account, including their friend list.  "As a result [of the bug], if a person went to download an archive of their Facebook account through our Download Your Information (DYI) tool, they may have been provided with additional email addresses or telephone numbers for their contacts or people with whom they have some connection," the security team explains. This is just another example of the impossibility of promising 100% security of information, even a company as large and influential as Facebook can have security slips. However, the Facebook security team acted quickly and within 24 hours the bug was taken care of. The impact of this bug seems to be minimal, and affected clients are being notified via email.    

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