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Facebook targeted in cyber attack; no sign user data was breached

February 15, 2013|By Salvador Rodriguez
  • Facebook announced Friday that it fell victim last month to a cyber attack.
Facebook announced Friday that it fell victim last month to a cyber attack. (Karen Bleier / AFP/Getty…)

Facebook said it fell victim to a "sophisticated attack" last month but has not found evidence that any user data was compromised.

The Menlo Park, Calif., company said the attack occurred after some of its employees visited a mobile developer's website that had been compromised. A malicious code hosted on the hacked website made it possible for malware to be installed on the employees' laptops.

"As soon as we discovered the presence of the malware, we remediated all infected machines, informed law enforcement and began a significant investigation that continues to this day," the company announced Friday.

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According to tech news website Ars Technica, Facebook was hacked with a previously unseen type of attack using Java, a platform used for developing software.

Facebook told Ars Technica that only a few employees were compromised, but that other companies fell victim to the attack as well.

The report says Facebook notified the other companies of the attack, but the names of those companies weren't disclosed. Some of the companies had already discovered the attack when Facebook informed them; others hadn't.

The attack occurred around same time as another major attack on fellow social network Twitter. In that attack, as many as 250,000 users' data may have been compromised, Twitter said.

A month ago, the Department of Homeland Security took the unusual step of  warning users to disable Java because of a major vulnerability.

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