Millions of Facebook users inadvertently gave hackers access to their accounts, and the company is trying to fix the problem. Hackers found a way in through the “View As” feature, which people use to see how their profile looks to others.
The company learned of the issue this week and today held a conference call with reporters. To the extent to which Facebook could manage the story, it’s the perfect day for such a report, when the country is focused on whether lawmakers will support Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court despite allegations of sexual assault.
On the conference call, CEO Mark Zuckerberg stressed that fighting hackers is an ongoing concern:
"This is a really serious security issue. This underscores there are just constant attacks from people who are trying to take over accounts and steal information from our community. This is going to be an ongoing effort."
Facebook’s VP of product development posted a “Security Update” statement on Facebook’s news site, including this reassurance:
“People’s privacy and security is incredibly important, and we’re sorry this happened. It’s why we’ve taken immediate action to secure these accounts and let users know what happened.”
Do you agree that Facebook timed the announcement when a bigger story would likely overshadow the news? Or am I just cynical?
Assess the Security Update as a persuasive message. Describe the tone and organizational strategy. How well does the statement achieve its objectives?
How well does the company take responsibility for what happened?