Network Flaw Causes Scary Web Error

SAN FRANCISCO -- Technology experts say the case of a Georgia woman and her two daughters who ended up in other people's Facebook accounts is an example of what can go wrong on the Internet.

The women were using their mobile phones when they found themselves in strangers' accounts with full access to troves of private information.

The glitch is the result of a routing problem at the family's wireless carrier, AT&T.

The company says it's fixing the network issue that caused the problem after a "limited number" of occurrences.

Experts say the little-known security flaw could have far-reaching implications for everyone on the Internet.

The problem adds a dimension to researchers' warnings that there are many ways online information can go awry.

Several security experts say the glitch is new to them and it could also happen on a PC, not just a phone.

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  • by hmm on Jan 17, 2010 at 01:33 AM
    sadly, nathan is right. regardless of how poor the service is with US Cellular, you almost have no choice BUT to get an account with them.
  • by Nathan Location: Eastern NC on Jan 16, 2010 at 04:54 PM
    There is more here than is being reported. You can't just get into someone else's account (site doesn't matter) because your ISP screwed up routing. Most sites and all major sites don't store your password, they store an MD5 hash (google or wiki it) of your password. When you type it, your browser hashes it and sends the hash. If they match, you log in. If they don't, you get denied. So even if I try to log in as you, there is no way I can provide a hash of your password that matches. That is not the way authentication works. Sorry. Now if you leave your iPhone sitting around and you're logged in and I pick it up, yeah I can get into your Facebook or whatever, but that's got nothing to do with the ISP/carrier. As for AT&T if they spent as much on coverage as they do on exclusive phones, they might be respectable, but as many of you know, US Cellular is the only choice for reliable coverage in eastern NC. They literally have no competition here.
  • by Rob Location: Greenville on Jan 16, 2010 at 04:54 PM
    People are spending so much time posting on Face Book they are missing out on their life. It is called a Crack Berry for a reason. Live your life don't tell about it.
  • by Nichole on Jan 16, 2010 at 01:07 PM
    This happened to my mother. She logged into facebook on her phone, and it turned out to be someone else's facebook, and it won't go to hers. AT&T has really gone down the drain with service.

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