Facebook bug set 14 million users' sharing settings to public

Facebook bug set 14 million users' sharing settings to public

14 million Facebook users who thought they were posting content to friends or select groups were really making it visible to the public, Facebook said on Thursday.

Facebook is having to douse yet another privacy blaze - as the social network admitted to inadvertently setting some of its addicts' private posts to public, meaning anyone could read them. This time it was caused by an internal bug that caused any new posts created by 14 million Facebook users to be posted publicly rather than using their default setting. Anyone whose posts were mistakenly made public will see a notification on their Facebook account-both the mobile app and website-entitled "Please Review Your Posts".

Facebook confirmed earlier this week that China-based Huawei - which has been banned by the United States military and is a lightning rod for cyberespionage concerns - was among device makers authorized to see user data in agreements that had been in place for years.

"This bug occurred as we were building a new way to share featured items on your profile, like a photo".

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Update 6/7/18 19:08EST: Updated with information provided by Facebook to BleepingComputer and to further make it clear it was news posts, not existing posts that were set to Public.

Facebook, which has 2.2 billion users, says the bug was active from May 18 until May 27. The software flaw was apparently live for 10 days last month and the company didn't give users any kind of warning.

Facebook has been criticized for its tendency to retroactively notify users of security bugs or breaches. "We expect that this kind of on-platform notification is something which people might see more of over the coming months as we try and do more (and better) to detect and fix issues before they affect people's experience". In the meantime, it has reverted the audience for any affected posts to whatever setting the user had selected previously.

Even if the bug was an accident on Facebook's part, Mayer said in an email that the FTC can bring enforcement action for privacy mistakes.

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