Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr and its parent company Yahoo, Dropbox, Bitly and other companies has teamed up to launch ThreatExchange – service that allows to share information on hacker attacks and other Internet security threats.
Facebook has made an official announcement, saying the project was necessitated by a “malware-based spam attack” that targeted tech firms just over a year ago. At the time, the companies quickly realized that sharing information with one another helped them beat the botnet, because their servers hosted only parts of it, but altogether they could have a complete picture.
After the companies discussed their security issues, they came to a conclusion that they needed a better model for threat sharing, and Facebook offered to build an API-based platform for security threat information. It was launched under the name “ThreatExchange”. The service is based on Facebook’s existing infrastructure, and its partners can access its data on new threats and selectively share their own data with all or some of the companies participating in the project.
Facebook emphasized that threat data is actually available to public, just like domain names and malware samples. However, if a company only wants to share certain information with the firms that experience the same problems, built-in controls in the new system make limited sharing very easy and help minimize errors.
Despite the fact that many of the companies participating in ThreatExchange are rivals, the benefits of sharing data about the botnets and malware targeting their networks apparently over weigh all competitive concerns. The largest social network in the world hopes that more tech giants will join the platform to make their own systems safer.