Facebook Inadvertently Leaks Millions of Photos to Developers

This year has been full of leaks, hacks and serious cybersecurity breaches that have involved all kinds of tech giants. It seems like the end of the year brings no respite as Facebook admitted that it unintentionally exposes the photos of nearly seven million users to apps that did not have permission to access these photos. A lot of apps are allowed access to some pictures, and usually users have control over whether or not this access is granted. However, a recent glitch ended up making it so that these apps got access to all kinds of pictures.

The truly worrying aspect of this news is that the photos that were leaked included photos that were added to stories and the like, temporary photos that Facebook apparently saved a copy of. It seems pretty ironic that Facebook is being so laissez faire with its users after using privacy as a marketing gimmick for such a long period of time. The Cambridge Analytica scandal is still fresh in people’s minds, and it is pretty clear that users are starting to lose trust in Facebook. The fact of the matter is that these social media giants are profiting off of the data that users add to their sites. In spite of this enormous profit margin, Facebook seems to be repeatedly failing at the one thing that people expect them to do: protect their privacy.

According to Facebook, this error was caused by a glitch in the API that is associated with photos on the social media platform. The important thing to note is that the majority of the leaks that have occurred, including this one, were caused by problems with Facebook itself. Google is shutting down Google+ after only two such incidents. In light of this, Facebook definitely seems to be in hot water.

Update: Facebook also published a dedicated web page that'll help users figure out if their account was affected by this new third party bug. If upon visiting this page facebook.com/help/200632800873098 you get this message that "Your Facebook account has not been affected by this issue and the apps you use did not have access to your other photos.", then this means you account was safe. Otherwise, you'll see a list of apps that may have used your private photos.

Facebook exposed up to 6.8 million users’ private photos to developers in the latest hack
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