Facebook Sues Shady Quiz Makers For Stealing User Data

It looks like Facebook is already making good on its recent promise to focus on user privacy. This week, the social media giant announced that its suing two Ukrainian men for allegedly creating quiz apps that scraped users’ private data and used it to target advertising.

According to the complaint, the quizzes tricked users into installing malicious browser extensions, and hooked them with juicy questions like “Do people love you for your intelligence or beauty?” and “Do you have royal blood?” Facebook says the two men compromised about 63,000 accounts, and caused over $75,000 in damages to the company’s reputation.

In its complaint, Facebook also seemed to point the finger at its own users, noting that the hack’s victims “effectively compromised their own browsers.” However, there’s just one problem with that line of attack: the quiz makers never could’ve done the damage they did without Facebook first approving them to use the platform.

“Fundamentally, this shows the failures of the app ecosystem — where there was little verification of what apps were doing,” cybersecurity expert Andrew Dwyer told BBC News. “As the [alleged] malicious activity was outside of the app, the typical review process of verifying the app may not have caught this activity.”

It’s nice that Facebook wants to protect its users, but perhaps the company should take a look in the mirror first before the next time it blames people for getting hacked.




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