Facebook campus evacuated over bomb threat, police find no explosive in search operations

Lately, things have not been in favour of Facebook. From data breach to giving third parties access to the personal data of its users without their consent, Facebook has been surrounded by several controversies

A bomb threat at the Silicon Valley headquarters of Facebook Inc near San Francisco, on Tuesday, prompted police authorities to briefly evacuate the building taking prompt security measures. However, hours after a sweep of the structure began, there was no trace of any explosive.

The New York Police had received an anonymous tip about a bomb threat regarding Facebook’s campus in Menlo Park, California, and alerted local authorities at about 4:30 pm, said Nicole Acker, a spokeswoman for the Menlo Park police.

“The San Mateo County bomb unit was dispatched with explosive detection dogs that conducted a sweep of the building and found no suspicious packages or devices,” the authorities confirmed. “The building is all clear and secure.”

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Nicole Acker further said that the evacuation was confined to a three-story facility on the campus which was not the headquarters building, though the company spokesperson said via email that “a few” buildings on the site have been evacuated.

However, both Facebook and police authorities have confirmed that everyone was safe.

Things have not been working too well for the social media giant in the recent past.

In a massive controversy which broke out in April this year, Facebook had stated that the personal data of nearly 87 million users may have been ‘improperly shared’ with political consultancy firm Cambridge Analytica. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg had accepted the blame for the data breach.

Failing to protect user data, Facebook had severely faced criticism worldwide. The Government of India has also sent a notice to Facebook to provide details on the data of Indian users leaked to CA.

Recently, the Italian Competition Authority (AGCM) had imposed a penalty of 10 million euros($11.4 million) on Facebook, for illegally harvesting the data of its users for commercial purposes. The Authority had also asked Facebook to run an apology on its website and app.

Meanwhile, another Silicon Valley company to face a security threat in the recent past was YouTube. A woman had opened fire at its headquarters in San Francisco, wounding three people before she shot herself dead.


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