Facebook on Monday notified over 800,000 users of a bug that unblocked some people they had previously blocked on the site and on Facebook Messenger, Axios reported.
The bug, said the company in a blog post, was active between May 29 and June 5.
Facebook said the user privacy issue:
- Did not reinstate any friend connections that had been severed.
- Might have allowed someone to contact people on Facebook Messenger who had previously blocked them.
- And, in 83 percent of cases, had only one person they had blocked temporarily unblocked.
"We know that the ability to block someone is important — and we'd like to apologize and explain what happened," said Erin Egan, the company's chief privacy officer.
Facebook has been struggling with privacy issues since the Cambridge Analytica data scandal broke in March. The Trump-affiliated firm came under scrutiny for inappropriately obtaining data on tens of millions of Facebook to learn about individuals and use it to create an information cocoon to change their perceptions.
Facebook banned the firm, but first learned of the breach more than two years ago. Before the Cambridge issue, there were Russian agents running election-related propaganda through fake political events and targeted ads.
"We have a responsibility to protect your data," Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said at the time of the Cambridge incident. "And if we can't, then we don't deserve to serve you. I've been working to understand exactly what happened and how to make sure this doesn't happen again. The good news is that the most important actions to prevent this from happening again today we have already taken years ago. But we also made mistakes, there's more to do, and we need to step up and do it."
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