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Facebook is facing another issue this year.

On Wednesday, March 21, the social media giant admitted in a blog post that millions of passwords were stored in plain text on its internal servers, a security slip that left them readable by the social networking platform’s employees.

“As part of a routine security review in January, we found that some user passwords were being stored in a readable format within our internal data storage systems,” Pedro Canahuati, vice president for engineering, security and privacy said. “This caught our attention because our login systems are designed to mask passwords using techniques that make them unreadable. We have fixed these issues and as a precaution we will be notifying everyone whose passwords we have found were stored in this way.”

They also clarified that “these passwords were never visible to anyone outside of Facebook and we have found no evidence to date that anyone internally abused or improperly accessed them.”

“We estimate that we will notify hundreds of millions of Facebook Lite users, tens of millions of other Facebook users, and tens of thousands of Instagram users. Facebook Lite is a version of Facebook predominantly used by people in regions with lower connectivity,” he added.

Although no passwords were exposed externally and the social media company didn’t find any evidence of abuse to date, Facebook and Instagram users were advised to change passwords to keep your account secure.

They also suggested to consider enabling a security key or two-factor authentication to protect your Facebook account using codes from a third party authentication app. When you log in with your password, Facebook will ask for a security code or to tap your security key to verify that it is you.

Header image from pexels.com

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