The Facebook hack that could have potentially compromised the personal data of millions of Facebook users has been linked to Java software. According to the Feb. 16, 2013, Newsday article “Facebook hacked; malware attack probed by FBI,” the case is being investigated by the FBI.
“The malicious software bypassed built-in protections to install malware. Facebook immediately reported the exploit to Oracle Corp., which owns the Java software that was compromised. Oracle provided a patch Feb. 1 to address the vulnerability.”
On Friday, Facebook said about the Facebook hack that this was a very “sophisticated attack” but that so far no evidence has been found that any Facebook user data has been compromised. Facebook Inc. operates the largest social network with "more than 1 billion members" worldwide.
Facebook stores the information of Facebook users. Since the social network is a primary target for hackers, the company employs a team which tries to detect and respond to any potential hackers. Facebook even pays “bounties to outside programmers who help identify malfeasance.”
Despite all of the company’s efforts to prevent an attack by hackers, however, Facebook discovered that a file on the laptop of one of its employees had been infected with malware after having visited a mobile developer’s website.
“By first hacking a mobile developer's site, the attackers had ensured that they would infect the computers of engineers working for several companies, said Anup Ghosh, founder of Invincea Inc, a security firm based in Fairfax, Va.”
Upon further examination, Facebook discovered that the laptops of several employees had been infected with the malicious file. Facebook immediately cleaned all laptops that showed the malicious software and began an investigation into the hackers’ origin.
Since several companies access a developer’s website, Facebook is not the only company that has to deal with compromised software and attacks by hackers. Twitter, the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and Bloomberg LP, the parent of Bloomberg News, have been subject to attempted attacks by hackers.
Not unlike these major companies, individual laptop users had to deal during the past two months with compromised Java software which appears to be the gateway for hackers to install malicious software.
Since the hack on Facebook is due to Java software and the FBI is probing into the case, maybe this time Oracle Corp., which owns the Java software that was compromised, will react faster and more efficient to assist not only big companies but all everyday Java software users.