Perimeter

Guest Blog // Selected Security Content Provided By Sophos
What's This?
6/23/2009
04:50 AM
Graham Cluley
Graham Cluley
Security Insights
50%
50%

Private Facebook Info Exposed By Simple Hack

Facebook's security has been called into question after the creators of a new blog discovered a hack that can expose private profile information of any user.

Facebook's security has been called into question after the creators of a new blog discovered a hack that can expose private profile information of any user.The creators of a new blog called FBHive showed how they could see everything listed in a Facebook user's "Basic Information" panel, regardless of the privacy settings they had chosen.

Using the security hole, they were able to view personal information about Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Digg founder Kevin Rose, and popular blogger Cory Doctorow. Of course, personal data, such as your date of birth, can be valuable information for identity thieves.

The folks at FBHive went public with proof that they had exploited the security flaw by posting screenshots of the Internet celebrities' details, seemingly frustrated that after waiting more than two weeks, Facebook had still not patched the flaw.

These screenshots have now been (quite rightly) obfuscated to protect the identities of the peopleconcerned, and Facebook has now fixed the vulnerability.

FBHive published a short video demonstrating how they were able to exploit the flaw to examine a user's profile.

It's great that Facebook has now fixed this flaw, but disturbing that the vulnerability existed in the first place -- millions of Facebook users potentially could have been in danger of having information snatched that they believed was secure.

Of course, this isn't the first time Facebook has found itself in the spotlight for not properly securing its users' information. Just last month, a security loophole was found that could have allowed identity thieves and spammers to gather users' personal email addresses.

And last year I stumbled across a security hole in the social networking site (demonstrated in the video below) that exposed every member's full date of birth, regardless of their security settings.

Facebook revealed dates of birth of users, even if they are 'hidden' from SophosLabs on Vimeo.

Maybe people need to learn that if they really want to be secure on social networks, they shouldn't rely on the Website keeping their date safe and sound -- that maybe it's better not to upload any personal information in the first place.

After all, do you really need to tell Facebook your real date of birth?

Graham Cluley is senior technology consultant at Sophos, and has been working in the computer security field since the early 1990s. When he's not updating his other blog on the Sophos website you can find him on Twitter at @gcluley. Special to Dark Reading.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Russia Hacked Clinton's Computers Five Hours After Trump's Call
Robert Lemos, Technology Journalist/Data Researcher,  4/19/2019
Tips for the Aftermath of a Cyberattack
Kelly Sheridan, Staff Editor, Dark Reading,  4/17/2019
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon
Current Issue
5 Emerging Cyber Threats to Watch for in 2019
Online attackers are constantly developing new, innovative ways to break into the enterprise. This Dark Reading Tech Digest gives an in-depth look at five emerging attack trends and exploits your security team should look out for, along with helpful recommendations on how you can prevent your organization from falling victim.
Flash Poll
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2019-11358
PUBLISHED: 2019-04-20
jQuery before 3.4.0, as used in Drupal, Backdrop CMS, and other products, mishandles jQuery.extend(true, {}, ...) because of Object.prototype pollution. If an unsanitized source object contained an enumerable __proto__ property, it could extend the native Object.prototype.
CVE-2019-11359
PUBLISHED: 2019-04-20
Cross-site scripting (XSS) vulnerability in display.php in I, Librarian 4.10 allows remote attackers to inject arbitrary web script or HTML via the project parameter.
CVE-2018-20817
PUBLISHED: 2019-04-19
SV_SteamAuthClient in various Activision Infinity Ward Call of Duty games before 2015-08-11 is missing a size check when reading authBlob data into a buffer, which allows one to execute code on the remote target machine when sending a steam authentication request. This affects Call of Duty: Modern W...
CVE-2019-11354
PUBLISHED: 2019-04-19
The client in Electronic Arts (EA) Origin 10.5.36 on Windows allows template injection in the title parameter of the Origin2 URI handler. This can be used to escape the underlying AngularJS sandbox and achieve remote code execution via an origin2://game/launch URL for QtApplication QDesktopServices ...
CVE-2019-11350
PUBLISHED: 2019-04-19
CloudBees Jenkins Operations Center 2.150.2.3, when an expired trial license exists, allows Cleartext Password Storage and Retrieval via the proxy configuration page.