Facebook data breach hit 533m users: how should you respond?

Earlier this month, we heard that over 500m users of Facebook had their data compromised after it was exposed to hackers.


According to the Guardian newspaper, birth dates, names and email addresses were seen by cyber criminals.


These days, most of us are active users of Facebook. Not only that, but we use our Facebook accounts to login to many other platforms. So how should we protect ourselves in the case of a data breach?


First of all, it’s a good idea to change your password. If you signed up the platform some years ago, it’s probably time to refresh your logins in case they have been linked at any point.


When credentials are seen in a data breach, criminals may exploit them to login to your account and send fraudulent messages on your behalf.


Furthermore, if you’ve used that password on other accounts as well, criminals may also try to hack those profiles. It’s therefore a good idea to change your credentials on every account you’ve used that password.


It’s best to use a distinct password for every site you login to. And it’s fine to save those credentials in your browser or an encrypted password manager app to help you remember them.


How do you make your updated password strong?


Our previous blog post following the Government’s Cyber Aware campaign gives some helpful hints for how to create a password that criminals won’t easily guess. They recommend three random words.


In addition to changing your passwords, consider how much information you supply when signing up to a site. Only give what’s absolutely necessary so there is minimal risk in the case of a data leak.


For more helpful hints on protecting yourself from cyber crime, sign up to our monthly newsletter.