Facebook Inc., operator of the largest social network with more than 1 billion members, is working with the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation to probe a malware attack, people with knowledge of the matter said.
Facebook, as part of its monitoring efforts, flagged a suspicious domain in its corporate logs and tracked it back to an employee computer. After examining the laptop, the company found a malicious file and then uncovered several other compromised laptops after a companywide search.
By first hacking a mobile developer’s site, the attackers had ensured that they would infect the computers of engineers working for several companies, said Anup Ghosh, founder of Invincea Inc, a security firm based in Fairfax, Virginia.
“There is a range of developers that might visit that site and they would infect them all,” Ghosh said of the attack.
The malicious software bypassed built-in protections to install malware. Facebook immediately reported the exploit to Oracle Corp., which owns the Java software that was compromised. Oracle provided a patch Feb. 1 to address the vulnerability.