Security Experts:

Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?


Data Protection

Facebook Takes Legal Action Against Data Scrapers

Facebook on Thursday announced that it took legal action against two individuals for scraping data from its website.

Facebook on Thursday announced that it took legal action against two individuals for scraping data from its website.

In a lawsuit filed in Portugal, Facebook Inc. and Facebook Ireland seek permanent injunction against the two for violation of the social media platform’s terms of service and Portugal’s Database Protection Law.

The social media giant says that the two created browser extensions that they made available for download through the Chrome Web Store. The extensions were being offered using the business name “Oink and Stuff.”

A privacy policy that accompanied these extensions claimed that no collection of personal information would be performed.

This, Facebook says, was misleading, as four of the extensions were found to contain spyware code, namely Web for Instagram plus DM, Blue Messenger, Emoji keyboard, and Green Messenger.

The code was meant to scrape users’ information from the Facebook website, but could also harvest additional data from the users’ browsers unrelated to the social platform, all without notifying the victims on the matter, the company reveals.

Data harvested from the Facebook website includes name, user ID, gender, relationship status, and age group, along with other account information.

In addition to seeking a permanent injunction against the two individuals, the social media platform is demanding that they delete all of the Facebook data they harvested.

“This case is the result of our ongoing international efforts to detect and enforce against those who scrape Facebook users’ data, including those who use browser extensions to compromise people’s browsers,” Facebook concludes.

Facebook previously took legal action against entities in the U.S., Israel and Ukraine over data scraping.

Related: Facebook Sues 12 Fraudulent Domain Names

Related: Facebook Sues Namecheap Over Fraudulent Domains

Related: Facebook Sues Analytics Firm for Data Misuse

Written By

Ionut Arghire is an international correspondent for SecurityWeek.

Click to comment

Daily Briefing Newsletter

Subscribe to the SecurityWeek Email Briefing to stay informed on the latest threats, trends, and technology, along with insightful columns from industry experts.

Expert Insights

Related Content

Application Security

Cycode, a startup that provides solutions for protecting software source code, emerged from stealth mode on Tuesday with $4.6 million in seed funding.

Data Breaches

GoTo said an unidentified threat actor stole encrypted backups and an encryption key for a portion of that data during a 2022 breach.


The North Korean APT tracked as TA444 is either moonlighting from its previous primary purpose, expanding its attack repertoire, or is being impersonated by...

Management & Strategy

Industry professionals comment on the recent disruption of the Hive ransomware operation and its hacking by law enforcement.

Malware & Threats

Microsoft plans to improve the protection of Office users by blocking XLL add-ins from the internet.

Management & Strategy

SecurityWeek examines how a layoff-induced influx of experienced professionals into the job seeker market is affecting or might affect, the skills gap and recruitment...

Management & Strategy

Tens of cybersecurity companies have announced cutting staff over the past year, in some cases significant portions of their global workforce.


A recently disclosed vBulletin vulnerability, which had a zero-day status for roughly two days last week, was exploited in a hacker attack targeting the...