New Facebook “Loophole” Found

Filed under Social Networks

Saw this on Liquidmatrix today….

Some programmers in the UK created a Facebook application that could be downloaded by a Facebook user which would allow the programmers to view personal information even with the privacy settings changed. From the UK article:

“Details such as the date of birth, address and contact numbers of the user, and that of all their friends, can be seen by the creators and could potentially be stolen.”

This shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone. Facebook has very limited control over what third-party applications or widgets a user can install. Sure they have “terms and conditions” that must be followed…but as we all know those can be circumvented quite easily.

I recently created a Facebook profile to test the security for myself and I have found that the default security/privacy settings for your Facebook profile are pretty much wide open. This include having your profile hit by search engine spiders. The average user of Facebook will most likely ignore these settings and download those cool Facebook applications that their friends are using as well. 🙂


  1. Dave Lewis says:

    You are bang on. I went surfing about on Facebook a while back and I was amazed at how much info people post on their pages. Couple that with the default settings and…well, you get the picture.

  2. Quzart says:

    It is the same with the dutch version called hyves:
    A lot of people post personal information without thinking about it, I even did a verbal test on this subject.

    For example your new boss could find all this information on google! not exactly what you want.

  3. Tom says:

    Google searching by potential employers is becoming very popular here in the US. Some recruiters I have talked to say that searching MySpace, Facebook, and other social-networking sites for profiles of job candidates is now part of their procedures.

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