If Facebook thinks that your government is spying on your over the internet, it will now warn you. Facebook’s chief security officer Alex Stamos announced through a blog post that the world’s largest social network will notify you if it believes that your account has been “targeted or compromised by an attacker suspected of working on behalf of a nation-state.”
He adds that such attacks “tend to be more advanced and dangerous than others”, which means that users should be extra careful.
If you’re a target, Facebook will display the following warning when you try to log in to your account.
Stamos says that if you receive such a warning, you should probably replace or rebuild your hardware (your computer or your phone) to get rid of any malware that government agency might have placed.
This begs the question: how does Facebook distinguish between a government-backed attack and one by a regular hacker? Stamos doesn’t go into details “to protect the integrity of our methods and processes,” but says that Facebook will only show the warning if the company has strong evidence of state involvement.