News

Almost Half a Billion Facebook Users Have Phone Numbers Exposed

A publicly accessible database containing more than 419 million Facebook users’ phone numbers has been uncovered.

The servers featured 133 million US records, 50 million from Vietnam and 18 million from the UK.

Each record contained the users’ unique Facebook IDs, which can be easily used to find specific profiles. This was displayed alongside their last known phone number, as well as their gender and home country.

A security researcher from the non-profit safe internet group GDI Foundation (not associated with Global Dating Insights) discovered the database and contacted TechCrunch after they were unable to find its owner.

TechCrunch reached out to the website’s host, who pulled it from the internet, and asked Facebook for a comment.

A Facebook spokesperson explained: “This data set is old and appears to have information obtained before we made changes last year to remove people’s ability to find others using their phone numbers.

“The data set has been taken down and we have seen no evidence that Facebook accounts were compromised.”

One concern was that the information could have been used to infiltrate accounts by carrying out sim-swap attacks and resetting the user’s password. The GDI Foundation also revealed that several major celebrities were among those to have their data exposed.

Last year, more than 50 million Facebook profiles were compromised by hackers who gained access to third party apps that a user had logged in to via the social media site. Tinder reassured singles at the time that it found no evidence of any dating profiles being infiltrated.

Read more here.

Dominic Whitlock

Dominic is the Editor for Global Dating Insights. Originally from Devon, England he achieved a BA in English Language & Linguistics from The University of Reading. He enjoys a variety of sports and has a further passion for film and music.

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