Menu
Facebook warns users of potential state-sponsored attacks

Facebook warns users of potential state-sponsored attacks

Those who see the alert are advised to wipe their systems

Facebook will now warn people if it has a strong suspicion an account is being targeted by a nation-state.

The social networking service already takes steps to secure accounts that may have been compromised but has decided to directly alert users of the type of attack that's under way, wrote Alex Stamos, Facebook's chief security officer.

Since state-sponsored attacks can be more sophisticated "having an account compromised in this manner may indicate that your computer or mobile device has been infected with malware," he wrote.

"Ideally, people who see this message should take care to rebuild or replace these systems if possible," Stamos wrote.

The warning advises people to turn on a security feature called login approvals. When Facebook sees someone logging on from a different browser or computer, it sends a one-time passcode to their mobile phone that must be entered in order to access the account.

facebook login approvals Screenshot

Facebook can be an incredibly valuable resource if an attacker can gain the login credentials to someone's account.

A person's messages can be analyzed for sensitive information, and their contact list may be useful for figuring out relationships.

It also gives an attacker an easy way to target other people related to the person. A malicious message could be crafted that would appear to come from a known contact, making it more likely that a victim would trust it.

A variety of ways are used to attribute cyberattacks to a particular group or country, but it's not an exact science. Security experts may get clues from the servers used to mount an attack or a particular type of malware or exploit used to attack a computer.

But attackers usually have stealth on their side. They can use methods or infrastructure that make it either confusing or impossible to definitively source. For its part, Facebook doesn't plan on sharing more information than the warning.

"To protect the integrity of our methods and processes, we often won't be able to explain how we attribute certain attacks to suspected attackers," Stamos wrote. "That said, we plan to use this warning only in situations where the evidence strongly supports our conclusion."


Follow Us

Join the New Zealand Reseller News newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Facebook

Featured

Slideshows

Kiwi channel comes together for another round of After Hours

Kiwi channel comes together for another round of After Hours

The channel came together for another round of After Hours, with a bumper crowd of distributors, vendors and partners descending on The Jefferson in Auckland. Photos by Maria Stefina.​

Kiwi channel comes together for another round of After Hours
Consegna comes to town with AWS cloud offerings launch in Auckland

Consegna comes to town with AWS cloud offerings launch in Auckland

Emerging start-up Consegna has officially launched its cloud offerings in the New Zealand market, through a kick-off event held at Seafarers Building in Auckland.​ Founded in June 2016, the Auckland-based business is backed by AWS and supported by a global team of cloud specialists, leveraging global managed services partnerships with Rackspace locally.

Consegna comes to town with AWS cloud offerings launch in Auckland
Veritas honours top performing trans-Tasman partners

Veritas honours top performing trans-Tasman partners

Veritas honoured its top performing partners across the channel in Australia and New Zealand, recognising innovation and excellence on both sides of the Tasman. Revealed under the Vivid lights in Sydney, Intalock claimed the coveted Partner of the Year 2017 (Pacific) award, with Data#3 acknowledged for 12 months of strong growth across the market. Meanwhile, Datacom took home the New Zealand honours, with Global Storage and Insentra winning service provider and consulting awards respectively. Dicker Data was recognised as the standout distributor of the year, while Hitachi Data Systems claimed the alliance partner award. Photos by Bob Seary.

Veritas honours top performing trans-Tasman partners
Show Comments