The Japanese government has joined its western counterparts in addressing Facebook over the spate of breaches that have exposed the personal data of millions of people worldwide.
On Monday, it ordered Facebook to improve the protection of users’ information in the light of recent happenings.
This follows Facebook admission hackers accessed the personal data of 29 million users in a breach it first disclosed late September.
Facebook initially admitted cyber-attacks enabled hackers steal ‘access tokens’ that compromised their accounts on the platform. The hackers were believed to have aggregated personal data voluntarily provided by the account holders on their pages. Up to 50 million accounts were initially thought affected.
Japan’s Personal Information Protection Commission on Monday demanded the social media giant investigate why the personal data was hacked and draw up preventive measures.
Facebook told Japanese authorities the 29 million people hacked in the latest attack may include Japanese users, top government spokesman Yoshihide Suga has said.
The Cambridge Analytica scandal, where millions of users had their personal data hijacked and used to target them using political adverts also called attention to security and privacy concerns on the platform.
Up to 100,000 Facebook users may have been affected in Japan in that scandal, the commission said.
‘It is the first time that the commission, which investigated the data leak with British authorities, has issued warnings to Facebook,’ an official told AFP.
The commission also ordered Facebook to communicate better with users and respond to them promptly, for example when they request their accounts be deleted.
Facebook pledged to ‘promptly inform users if the platform was inappropriately used and cooperate with the commission and other countries’ regulators’ on its website.