Life-Altering Data Exposed to Hackers


Equifax announced they had a massive breach in their data systems. What if Facebook, or Google experienced a comparable hacking of information? Life-altering data could be stolen by any hacker.

This difference is hackers would have a broader range of information: personal photographs, private conversations, and secrets. This is far beyond the 143 million Social Security numbers stolen from Equifax.
John Lancaster wrote about Facebook in the “London Review of Books.” He stated, “What Facebook does is watch you, and then use what it knows about you and your behavior to sell ads. It knows far, far more about you than the most intrusive government has ever known about its citizens.”

If Facebook were hacked the intruder would be able to collect information concerning personal interests, income, sexual activity, and children. The same data could be stolen from Google in addition to the emails of over a billion users.

Both of these companies have an arsenal of security researchers and seemingly unlimited resources, however, it would only take a small hack to accomplish serious damage.

Equifax is not as trustworthy as Facebook or Google. Credit reporting agencies can be hostile toward consumers and even though they have data on almost every adult in the United States, they regularly report false information, preventing people from obtaining desired loans. Equifax offers a credit monitoring service for $17 a month.

In 2018, the European Union plans to impose steep financial penalties on companies that are unable to protects consumer information. Companies will have to notify consumers within three days of the breach.
It would be beneficial for the Unites States government to follow suit, however, Donald Trump signed a law into effect that permits internet service providers to sell customer information to advertisers.

Written by Jeanette Smith


Bloomberg: Forget Equifax. Facebook and Google Have the Data That Should Worry You

Image Courtesy of Thomas Hawk’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

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