Meta reportedly disciplined or fired more than two dozen workers for taking over Facebook user accounts
- Meta Platforms fired or disciplined dozens of employees and contractors over the course of the last year for compromising Facebook user accounts, according to reporting by The Wall Street Journal.
- In some cases, the Journal wrote, the contractors, working for Allied Universal, accepted bribes to take control of user accounts.
- The hijacking was reportedly done through an internal tool known as Oops, according to the Journal.
Meta Platforms reportedly fired or disciplined more than two dozen employees and contractors who allegedly compromised and took control of Facebook user accounts, The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday.
Bribery was involved in some cases, the Journal reported, citing sources and documents.
The report said users who were locked out of their Facebook accounts often weren't able to regain access through traditional means, such as reaching out to Facebook directly. So, some users resorted to seeking outside sources who have contacts within Meta who were willing to unlock accounts for them.
In some cases, according to documents viewed by the Journal, workers accepted thousands of dollars in bribes from hackers to compromise or access user accounts. The terminations or discipline came about as a result of an internal investigation, according to the Journal.
"Individuals selling fraudulent services are always targeting online platforms, including ours, and adapting their tactics in response to the detection methods that are commonly used across the industry," Meta communications director Andy Stone told CNBC.
According to the report, some of the fired workers were employed as Allied Universal contractors providing security for Meta facilities who were given access to internal employee tools to assist company employees.
The tools, the Journal reported, were referred to as "Oops," a shorthand for Online Operations, and were originally intended for internal and special case use. The system allowed employees to restore any individual user's access to their rightful account, according to the report.
"People should never buy or sell accounts or pay for an account recovery service because doing so violates our Terms," Stone said. "We also regularly update our security measures to address this kind of activity and will keep taking appropriate action against those involved in these kinds of schemes."
Allied Universal did not immediately respond to a request for comment.