Millions of Instagram Users Impacted by Facebook Password Leak

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We brought you news of the Facebook password debacle back in March.

When we reported it to you then, it was believed that the leak primarily affected Facebook users. But it is now known that millions of Instagram user passwords were impacted as well.

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Image by Katka Pavlickova

It was previously thought that the impact on Instagram users was minimal – like in the tens of thousands of users, not millions, as TechCrunch reports.

Instagram said in a post about the incident: “We discovered additional logs of Instagram passwords being stored in a readable format…We now estimate that this issue impacted millions of Instagram users. We will be notifying these users as we did the others. Our investigation has determined that these stored passwords were not internally abused or improperly accessed.”

All of this goes back to Facebook’s storage of user names and passwords in a plain text document all the way back to 2012.

This information was stored in “logs accessible to some 2,000 engineers and developers.”

“In the course of our review, we have been looking at the ways we store certain other categories of information — like access tokens — and have fixed problems as we’ve discovered them. There is nothing more important to us than protecting people’s information, and we will continue making improvements as part of our ongoing security efforts at Facebook,” the company wrote on its blog.

Of course, if you’re worried about the security of your account you have a range of options.

First, you can enable two-factor authentication. This means that you will have to enter your password and a number that is sent to you via text or some other method that you designate.

Second, you could change your password to something memorable but complex.

If you’d like to read up on Facebook’s user security suggestions, you can do that here.

Were you impacted by the password leak? Let us know your story in the comments.

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Kehl is our staff photography news writer and has over a decade of experience in online media and publishing and you can get to know him better here

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