Bloomberg News

Facebook Uncovers Glitch That Enabled Private Photo Viewing

December 07, 2011

(Updates with FTC case in fourth paragraph.)

Dec. 6 (Bloomberg) -- Facebook Inc., the biggest social- networking company, is working to fix a security flaw that let people view other users’ private photos, including those of Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg.

The bug enabled anyone to view a “limited number” of recently uploaded photos, regardless of a person’s privacy settings, the company said in an e-mailed statement. Facebook shut the affected system after becoming aware of the bug and will restore it after the glitch is fixed. Photos of Zuckerberg were published anonymously on the Web, reports said.

“The privacy of our user’s data is a top priority for us, and we invest significant resources in protecting our site and the people who use it,” the Palo Alto, California-based company said in a statement.

Facebook, which has more than 800 million users, is taking steps to improve privacy after agreeing last month to settle complaints by the Federal Trade Commission that it failed to protect user data or disclose how it could be used. In a blog posting at the time, Zuckerberg said the company should have been more vigilant in protecting users’ privacy and that Facebook had made “a bunch of mistakes.”

Blogs including Cnet’s ZDnet posted photos from Zuckerberg’s personal collection.

--Editors: Tom Giles, Nick Turner

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Tom Giles at tgiles5@bloomberg.net.


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