A new notification system launched by Facebook is aimed at protecting user accounts, says Alex Stamos, the company’s chief security officer.
If the social network giant thinks an account has been targeted by state-sponsored hackers, they will now let users know about it by sending a notification message.
With online security now a major concern for internet users, companies of all types have had to address the issue of customer confidence and make sure that they respond to worries.
Facebook say that account security is “paramount” and that constant monitoring for “potentially malicious activity” takes place.
Now, any user the network thinks is being targeted or has been compromised by anyone working for a nation state will be notified.
The announcement was made in a blog post by Alex Stamos, who wrote: “While we have always taken steps to secure accounts that we believe to have been compromised, we decided to show this additional warning if we have a strong suspicion that an attack could be government-sponsored.”
The post went on to explain that anyone receiving a notification shouldn’t automatically assume that the Facebook’s platform itself has been compromised. The problem could lie in the device or devices that the account holder uses to connect to the account in question, possibly caused by a malware infection.
“Ideally, people who see this message should take care to rebuild or replace these systems if possible,” Stamos explained.
The company also pointed out that it will not reveal the process involved in discovering attacks as it wants to protect the methods so that hackers can’t circumvent them.
The move by Facebook comes in response to continued public disquiet following a wave of revelations surrounding spy agencies snooping on people’s social media profiles.
“That said, we plan to use this warning only in situations where the evidence strongly supports our conclusion,” Stamos wrote in the post. “We hope that these warnings will assist those people in need of protection, and we will continue to improve our ability to prevent and detect attacks of all kinds against people on Facebook.”