Facebook’s Privacy Blunders Continue - Company Reports a New Bug That Unblocked People

A Facebook bug quietly unblocked people that 800,000 of its users had previously blocked

A Facebook bug quietly unblocked people that 800,000 of its users had previously

The incident, following so closely on the heels of another similar settings glitch plus larger data and privacy issues, is as good a reminder as any of why most people have gotten more acclimated to Instagram as a Facebook alternative. Likewise, a previously blocked contact might have been able to contact someone who had blocked them on Messenger.

Just a few months after launching Snapchat competitor, Riff, a collaborative video creation app for both iOS and Android users in 2015, Facebook plugged the plug on it.However, the tech giant said that most of the features of the app had been integrated into the main Facebook app and Messenger. According to an announcement on Facebook's news blog, the company is notifying 800,000 Facebook and Messenger users that people they blocked may have been unblocked between May 29 and June 5. The Cambridge Analytica scandal, which unfolded in March, affected more than 8.7 crore users.

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Facebook says the bug has been fixed and has begun informing affected users via a pop-up message.

The bug didn't reinstate any previously severed friend connections, Facebook says, and 83% of users the bug affected had only one previously blocked person temporarily unblocked.

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When asked by a journalist, Facebook on Twitter provided context of what caused the bug and how it worked. "For example, pictures shared with friends of friends", writes Facebook's chief privacy officer, Erin Egan. Also, the bug would have let these individuals re-add friends who had blocked them from their profile. "We know that the ability to block someone is important and we'd like to apologise and explain what happened", Egan added.

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