In a comparatively tame social-networking-gone-bad story, Jim Breyer, a member of Facebook‘s board of directors, had his Facebook account hacked, and then used to send out a phishing e-mail. It’s not that tame, though, considering that there are only four people on Facebook’s board of directors, Breyer, Mark Zuckerberg, Marc Andreessen, and Peter Thiel, so he’s actually one of the bigger names in charge of the network. The hack wound up sending spam to some of his more than 2,300 friends.
The e-mail subject read “Would You Like a Facebook Phone Number?” and included a link to “see more details and RSVP.” Normally, that’s an obvious phishing scam that we’d all dismiss to the purgatory of the spam file without a second thought. But if it was coming from one of the top four guys at Facebook? Well, that would sound pretty legit. Not that I have any desire to call people through Facebook. At all.
The news of Breyer’s hacked account comes at a time when Facebook’s angry privacy chickens are in many ways coming home to roost. I mean, it’s one thing when Wired gets on your case. What do they know about technology? But Betty White? You’re in trouble now.
In response to the hacking, Facebook has said
This was a phishing scam and Jim’s account appears to have been compromised… The issue has since been resolved and we’re actively trying to block this activity.
Users whose accounts have been compromised are put through a remediation process, where they must take steps to re-secure their account and learn security best practices. This is what happened with Mr. Breyer’s account.
Then they asked users to help keep Facebook secure by not clicking on suspicious links. We have no further comment.
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