Meta disciplined or fired employees for taking over user accounts: WSJ

The Meta Platforms logo is seen in Davos, Switzerland, May 22, 2022.

Arend Wegmann Reuters

meta The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday that the platforms have either fired or disciplined more than two dozen employees and contractors who allegedly hacked and took control of Facebook user accounts.

The newspaper stated, quoting sources and documents, that bribery was involved in some cases.

The report said that users who were banned from their Facebook accounts were often unable to regain access through traditional means, such as accessing Facebook directly. Therefore, some users resorted to looking for third party sources who had contacts within Meta who were willing to open accounts for them.

In some cases, according to documents seen by the Journal, workers have accepted thousands of dollars in bribes from hackers to compromise or gain access to user accounts. The termination or disciplinary action was the result of an internal investigation, according to the Journal.

“Individuals selling fraudulent services are constantly targeting online platforms, including ours, and adapting their tactics in response to detection methods commonly used across the industry,” Andy Stone, Meta communications director, told CNBC.

According to the report, some of the fired workers hired as Allied Universal contractors to provide security for Meta facilities were given access to internal employee tools to assist the company’s employees.

The magazine reported that the tools were referred to as “oops,” short for online operations, and were originally intended for internal use and special cases. The system allowed employees to restore any individual user’s access to their legitimate account, according to the report.

“People should never buy or sell their accounts or pay for an account recovery service because doing so would violate our terms,” ​​Stone said. “We also regularly update our security procedures to address this type of activity and will continue to take appropriate action against those involved in these types of schemes.”

Allied Universal did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Read more in the Wall Street Journal.

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