The company wrote on its Security page that it will notify you if your Facebook account “has been targeted or compromised by an attacker suspected of working on behalf of a nation-state.”
And as an extra measure, it will also suggest you turn on Login Approvals, which sends you a special security code whenever you, or someone else, tries to access your account from a new device or browser, as well as re-securing all your other accounts, like email, etc.
Who’s watching you?
While Facebook said that it won’t be specifying exactly how it is able to determine that a government is backing an attack on your account, it explained that it would only send you the warning notification “only in situations where the evidence strongly supports our conclusion.”
“While we have always taken steps to secure accounts that we believe to have been compromised, we decided to show this additional warning if we have a strong suspicion that an attack could be government-sponsored,” said Alex Stamos, Facebook’s chief security officer, said in the post.
“We do this because these types of attacks tend to be more advanced and dangerous than others, and we strongly encourage affected people to take the actions necessary to secure all of their online accounts.”
Of course, Facebook was also quick to point out that these types of attacks don’t compromise Facebook’s own security, and that if it does send out a warning to you, it could mean instead that your computer or device may have malware.
Either way, it is an interesting type of warning option given we live in the time of NSA surveillance controversies. Perhaps Edward Snowden might consider joining Facebook now.