Facebook Bug Exposes Contact Info of 6M Users
Company announces that glitch is fixed (late on a Friday afternoon)
By John Johnson, Newser Staff
Posted Jun 22, 2013 5:32 AM CDT
The Facebook logo.   (AP Photo/James H. Collins, File)

(Newser) – Facebook says it has fixed a glitch that may have exposed the email addresses and phone numbers of about 6 million users to other Facebook members. The bug involved the Download Your Information tool that allows people to upload their address books, and specifically the way Facebook used it to generate friend recommendations. TechCrunch reports that the bug had been live since last year, until Facebook's crowd-sourced White Hat program brought attention to it.

  • Says Facebook: "We currently have no evidence that this bug has been exploited maliciously and we have not received complaints from users or seen anomalous behavior on the tool or site to suggest wrongdoing," the company says in a blog post. "Although the practical impact of this bug is likely to be minimal since any email address or phone number that was shared was shared with people who already had some of that contact information anyway, or who had some connection to one another, it's still something we're upset and embarrassed by, and we'll work doubly hard to make sure nothing like this happens again."

  • Be wary: This particular glitch may not be especially heinous, but it "sheds light on issues of safety related to uploading one’s address book and list of contacts to services which thrive on such personal data," writes Kara Swisher at AllThingsD. "Other companies like Path, Instagram, Twitter and many more also use contact importing tools such as these."
  • Another Friday announcement? Security expert Graham Cluley is ticked that Facebook once again decided to inform the world of a glitch late on a Friday afternoon. "It’s called damage limitation," he writes. "For the Facebook brand, at least. It’s not called doing your level best to get the issue reported to as wide an audience as possible."

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Showing 3 of 12 comments
Jun 22, 2013 3:01 PM CDT
all ur personal information r belong to the internet lol
Jun 22, 2013 7:58 AM CDT
Only fools waste time with Faceslap.
Jun 22, 2013 7:25 AM CDT
I hate Farcebook and I am about to stop using it. Just like AOHell which I will never go back to... Farcebook is getting WORSE and WORSE and WORSE !!! Of course NOBODY has any right to evade the NSA, it has superior authority even over the CIA and our President and Congress. The idea that ANYTHING in our god-damned corporate-communist USA is sacred or Democracy is an absolute lunacy !!!! BUT THE GOD-BELIEVING FLAG-WAVING U.S. PUBLIC ALLOWED IT because our public is not grown-up enough for Democracy!!!