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The latest Facebook privacy ‘bug’ hijacks your iPhone camera

Facebook users on iPhone handsets are reporting a worrying privacy flaw that turns the camera on in the background.

Many users have taken to social media to report the issue, which appears to activate the camera user interface for Facebook Stories without their permission.

One user, who posted the issue below, showed the UI opening simply when they switched from portrait to landscape and back again when watching a video. The user described it as ‘a little worrying’ and that’s putting it mildly.

Related: How to delete a Facebook account

Another user discovered it operating behind the main feed, which suggests it is running in the background whenever using the app. Below you can see it peeking out behind the main feed on the left hand side of the display.  The user, Jonathan Maddux said that the issue was replicable when using five iPhones on iOS 13.2.2, but not on iOS 12.

Guy Rosen, who perhaps has the world’s most demanding job as Facebook’s VP of integrity, told Maddux that the issue “looks like a bug” and that the firm is looking into it. Maddux wasn’t necessarily convinced by the explanation.

Facebook is yet to issue a statement on the report and it appears this is a genuine bug rather than anything more suspicious. However, given the current level of suspicion over the firm’s privacy record Zuckerberg’s charges might be wise to clean this one up sooner rather than later.

Facebook is embroiled in a number of user privacy scandals that has governments around the world seeking to regulate the social network. Leading US politicians like Elizabeth Warren are seeking to break up the company, and many of its big tech counterparts, in order to make them less powerful.

What started with the Cambridge Analytica scandal continues to burgeon, with a seemingly endless stream of privacy woes emerging in the last couple of years.

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