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How to figure out if your personal information got exposed by Facebook or not (updated)

The many ways in which different social media platforms are advancing is outstanding. More people are relying on these social media apps to store their general personal information in. One such app is Facebook, in which people after so many years of deciding whether to give the multinational tech giant the chance to store their personal information finally gave in and listed their phone numbers, date of birth and what not, but with as the many different social media platforms are reaching new heights every day, Facebook seems to be that one app that is failing to be the one platform for everything, whether that be for entertainment, sharing news, storing sensitive information and personal information. By the looks of it, it appears that the tech giant is making its progress by taking steps backwards.

A hacker recently leaked personal data of 533 million Facebook users online, and that too for free which seems to be the confusing part. The personal data included phone numbers, email addresses, account IDs, bios, location, relationship status and of course names. As people are starting to store more of their personal information online, many cases of cybercrime have been recorded recently. Privacy Rights Clearinghouse collected data on this occasion and according to their research; over 4 billion records have gotten leaked or have gotten stolen in the recent past.

It is reported that a cybercrime like this was also recorded last year but according to Facebook it had fixed that bug but the same thing has been reported this time making some people believe if Facebook even put strict restrictions after that or not. Facebook has also issued a clarification about this whole matter.

To find out whether your personal information was leaked during this, there is a website that allows users to check whether their personal data got leaked by such recent breaches or not. This website called ‘Have I Been Pwned’ (HIBP) was developed by Troy Hunt and after this Facebook mishap he has added the leaked data to his internet service to help users figure out if their data has been leaked or not. In order to check, the user will have to visit the Have I Been Pwned website, put in their email address on the search field, and the click on the ‘pwned?’ option. After that a list of all the data breached will be displayed.

Facebook’s recent data leak consisted of mainly phone numbers and only 2.5 million out of the 533 million Facebook members had their email address leaked. So it was important for users to get the exact info regarding weather their phone number leaks as well publicly.

Thankfully, Troy Hunt in a new development tweeted he has finally enabled the mobile phone number search on HIBP site through which users can now check their phone numbers as well to see if their private information got exposed in any recent data breach.


Read next: While responding to the criticism of Facebook regarding changes in the Apple's transparency practices, Tim Cook says that it’s hard to argue against the privacy of users

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