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Facebook: Hackers accessed information from more than 29 million accounts

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Posted at 1:44 PM, Oct 12, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-12 14:44:01-04

By RNN Staff

(RNN) - Facebook downsized the number of compromised accounts from a recent hack, saying only 30 million accounts were compromised instead of 50 million. Personal information was accessed in 29 million accounts, according to a statement released on Friday.

On Sept. 25, Facebook discovered hackers stole "access tokens” from accounts, which act like a digital key to request information. The access tokens keep people logged in on their browsers and phones so they don’t have to re-enter their password each time they visit Facebook.

The hackers then moved from friend-to-friend, stealing tokens from about 400,000 people, setting up mirrored accounts to gain access to more people. As a result, the hackers stole access tokens for about 30 million people.

For 15 million users, the hackers obtained only name and contact information, such as phone number, email - or both if the user had both in their profile.

For around 14 million people, the attackers gathered name and contact information, as well other profile information, such as gender, relationship status, hometown, birthday, education and more.

As a precaution back in September, Facebook logged out 90 million accounts they thought might have their access tokens compromised, but said there was no need to change account passwords.

Messenger content was not available to the hackers unless that person was an administrator for a page and the page received a message from someone on Facebook. The contents of those messages were visible to hackers.

If you can’t log into your account, Facebook has these tips to help you access your page. If you have more questions, visit Facebook’s Help Center.

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