Facebook is suing a Ukrainian hacker it alleges scraped and sold publicly available data from 178 million of its users on a forum.
The company filed a lawsuit against Alexander Alexandrovich Solonchenko on Thursday, alleging he broke the company’s “Terms of Service” and “Platform Terms” agreements which prohibits its users from doing anything unlawful with its data, obtaining data using automated means, and submitting its “platform data” onto any directory with its approval.
According to Facebook’s complaint issued in the Northern District of California, the company claims Solonchenko used an automated method to scrape the user IDs and phone numbers from approximately 178 million Facebook users between 2018 and 2019.
Evidence presented by Facebook’s attorneys shows Solonchenko’s history of selling leaked data from other companies on Raid Forums, a website where users buy and sell leaked and stolen datasets. In a screenshot from the site provided by Facebook, an account that purportedly belongs to Solonchenko offhandedly offered to sell the scraped data.
“I also have some other DBs, consumers lists, B2B dbs all over the world, phone dbs, non-public FB data (180m for USA),” Solonchenko wrote. “Please PM me your contact if interested.”
In its complaint, Facebook asked the federal court for a jury trial, injunctions preventing Solonchenko from using its products or selling any data obtained from it, and an undisclosed amount for damages.