Saturday, November 19, 2011

Facebook, the hack-scarred networking site - Indian users are quite safe

Facebook, the hack-scarred networking site has declared that over 500 million users are quite safe and no need to worry about the hacking issue.

The hacking news on the world's most popular social networking site had panicked millions of Indian users and raised questions about Facebook's security measures.

However, the social networking site claimed that "security of users topped their list of priorities and no user accounts were compromised". They said that Indian users are quite safe and there is nothing to worry.

"Protecting Facebook users from spam and malicious content is a top priority for us. Users' photos are not being transferred to an unwanted sites and no accounts have been compromised.

"We are always working to improve our systems to isolate and remove material that violates our terms, and to take action against those responsible for these types of content," claimed a Facebook official.

Cyber security experts opined that vulnerability is there for all the sites on the Internet.

"To a very large extent it is the user who needs to be careful and fully aware of what he/she is sharing. There are some known problems that the social networking site has already addressed to safeguard user information, however, there are certain unknown problems that cannot be stopped," said Rohit Srivastwa, founder of a white-hacker club.

"For a website, it is not possible to track every single thing that is posted. User discretion is very important. Why just Facebook? Malicious content is sent to people via mail as well. In that case should we cast the blame on email providers and tell them to scan every single mail being sent to users?" asked Rohit.

"Facebook has shifted the blame on browser vulnerability. But it is time that the social networking site puts its foot down against malware and looks at ways to secure the site from such attacks.

"It is true that often such instances go unreported, making it difficult for the affected site to track down offenders. But it is equally important for the governments to understand that cybercrime is a global issue," said Vijay Mukhi, advisor of cyber security, Government of India.

"We need an international cyber crime resolution body to deal with such problems. Such problems won't end, whether it is this social networking site, or any other - unless a foolproof security mechanism is brought in place. Facebook too has issued a set of simple guidelines advising users to follow them to stay safe. Security is an issue everywhere online," suggested Facebook Security.

"It's important to be aware of the risks and learn how to protect your accounts and your computer. It is important to protect yourself from scams, viruses, and hacks that can infect your computer or take over your Facebook account, annoying and possibly harming you and your friends," it added.

A few colleges and private firms have blocked the social networking site to save their employees and students from any kind of embarrassment. Few companies have also blocked the site to avoid virus attack on their servers.

Meanwhile, a few advertising agencies claimed that the banning of these social networking sites are affecting their companies.

"We are looking into the matter and we will study it closely after which we would take a call on how to deal with the situation," said S Murugan, Deputy Inspector General of Police (DIGP), CID.

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