Facebook announced yesterday that a recent bug affected more than 800,000 users’ privacy settings, allowing blocked users on Facebook and Messenger to become unblocked without a user’s knowledge or consent.
In a blog post, Facebook chief privacy officer Erin Egan confirmed the bug was active from May 29 to June 5 but “did not reinstate any friend connections that had been severed,” meaning the unblocked users weren’t able to see content shared only with friends, but might have been able to see content shared using less restrictive privacy settings. Likewise, a previously blocked contact might have been able to contact someone who had blocked them on Messenger.
According to Facebook’s data, 83 percent of people affected by the bug had only one person they had blocked temporarily unblocked.
Facebook says it is sending notifications to users affected by the bug and the issue has now been fixed. This news comes after Facebook recently issued an apology for a bug that made 14 million users’ private posts public. This mishap also comes on the back of the Cambridge Analytica scandal, in which up to 87 million users’ data was “improperly shared” with Cambridge Analytica, which used the data for political purposes.
In other tech-related news, Instagram launches a new “you’re all caught up” feature.