Facebook login credentials and other information like phone number, location details, etc. of over 533 million global users have leaked online. Out of the total number of affected users, over 6 million exposed Facebook credentials belong to Indian users. Security researcher Alan Gal discovered a user on a hacking forum made the entire dataset public for free.

Gal claims that the data was first leaked in January when the user “advertised an automated bot that could provide phone numbers for hundreds of millions of Facebook users in exchange for a price”. The user has now made the entire leaked Facebook data, public. The data includes Facebook IDs, phone numbers, email IDs, names, location details, birthdate, etc., of over 500 million users. A Business Insider report reveals that out of the 533 million users from 106 countries, 6 million users are from India. 

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Data of over 32 million American users and  11 million UK users have also been exposed publicly. Facebook told the publication that the hackers took advantage of a vulnerability that was fixed in 2019. However, hackers might have had access to the information before it could fix the bug.

“A database of that size containing the private information such as phone numbers of a lot of Facebook’s users would certainly lead to bad actors taking advantage of the data to perform social engineering attacks [or] hacking attempts,” Gal told Insider.

Given that the sensitive data is already out in the public, hackers can take advantage of it and perform all kinds of attacks to extract more information.

tepping up the security options on its social media platform, Facebook has now enabled a hardware security key for its users on Android and iOS for even greater encryption support. The new authentication step will allow the use of a physical security key as a means for users to log in to their accounts.

Note that the support for a hardware security key for logging into your Facebook account is not new. The feature has been present on the Facebook website accessed through a desktop since 2017. However, it is only now that the tech major is rolling it out for its users on Android and iOS.

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