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Another Facebook privacy bug shares 14m users’ posts with the world

Facebook has another privacy cock-up on its hands. The social network has alerted 14 million users that status updates had been unintentionally shared with the world.

A bug relating to some accounts caused their last-used, “friends-only” setting to be ignored, leading to updates being posted publicly and available for anyone on Facebook to see.

Facebook is now notifying affected users, to say the problem has been fixed with posts reverting to the intended settings. Regardless, the firm is giving users the opportunity to review the posts made while the bug was active.

Facebook says the problem existed from May 18 to May 27, potentially affecting nearly two weeks of status updates.

In a statement, Facebook told TechCrunch: “We recently found a bug that automatically suggested posting publicly when some people were creating their Facebook posts. We have fixed this issue and starting today we are letting everyone affected know and asking them to review any posts they made during that time.

“To be clear, this bug did not impact anything people had posted before – and they could still choose their audience just as they always have. We’d like to apologise for this mistake”.

Related: How to delete your Facebook account

The issue comes hot on the heels of the Cambridge Analytica scandal, which saw the personal data of more than 88 million users shared with a controversial data firm, in the majority of cases without permission.

In a commercial currently airing around the clock on television, Facebook makes a few promises to clean up its act.

“From now on, Facebook will do more to keep you safe and protect your privacy,” the narrator says.

Good start, guys. You’re really convincing us things are going to be different now.

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