It looks like the year could not end without another scandal on Facebook. This time around the company cleaned up the discovery of a bug in its photo API that allowed apps to access photos from 6.8 million accounts that were not posted. The bug affects people who have logged in to Facebook and allowed third-party apps to access their photos. I have fixed the problem, but because of the bug, some apps have been able to access ” a wider set of photos ” than intended for 12 days between 13 September and 25 September.
The bug gave 876 developers with up to 1,500 apps access to 6.8 million users of photos. These usually only see the photos that people share on their timeline, but they could also access other photos, such as those shared on Marketplace or Facebook Stories, and photos uploaded to Facebook but not posted on the timeline of an account.
The only apps affected by this bug were ones that Facebook approved to access the photos API and that individuals could access their photos. So it’s not as bad as apps seeing your images without your consent, but it means that apps may have seen more pictures than they should have – or that you knew they would.
Facebook says it’s sorry that happened and next week app developers will roll out tools that enable them to determine it could affect which people using their app. The company is working with the developers to delete the pictures. If your account has been affected by this bug, you will it will notify you via a Facebook alert, which will take you to a Help Center link where you can see if you have used any of these applications.
The social network also advises that you log in to any app you share your photos to see which images you have access to.
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