Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?


Data Protection

Photos of 6.8 Million Facebook Users Exposed by API Bug

Facebook Discloses Photo API Bug Affecting 6.8 Million Users

Facebook Discloses Photo API Bug Affecting 6.8 Million Users

Facebook revealed on Friday that a bug related to its Photo API could have allowed third-party apps to access users’ photos, even ones that were supposed to be private.

According to the social media giant, its internal team discovered a bug in the Photo API that impacted users who had utilized Facebook Login and allowed third-party apps to access their photos.

Applications that are granted access to photos are normally allowed to access only images shared on a user’s timeline. However, due to this flaw, developers could have accessed other photos as well, including ones shared on Facebook Marketplace or via Stories, or photos that were only uploaded to the social media service but not posted.

The vulnerability exposed photos for 12 days, between September 13 and September 25, 2018. Facebook believes the bug impacted up to 6.8 million users and 1,500 applications built by over 870 developers. The company pointed out that only apps granted access to photos by the user could have exploited the flaw.

Facebook says it’s notifying impacted people via an alert in their account and it also plans on releasing tools early next week that will allow developers to determine which of their users may have been affected by the issue. Developers will be instructed to delete photos obtained as a result of this bug.

Facebook announced this week that it has paid out more than $1.1 million through its bug bounty program in 2018, with roughly $7.5 million paid by the social media giant since the launch of its program in 2011.

The $1.1 million has been awarded to researchers from over 100 countries for more than 700 valid reports.

Facebook has been hit by several privacy and security incidents this year, which has resulted in the company expanding its bug bounty program and significantly increasing rewards for some types of vulnerabilities.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Related: The Scandals Bedevilling Facebook

Related: Industry Reactions to Facebook Hack

Related: Facebook App Exposed Data of 120 Million Users

Written By

Eduard Kovacs (@EduardKovacs) is a managing editor at SecurityWeek. He worked as a high school IT teacher for two years before starting a career in journalism as Softpedia’s security news reporter. Eduard holds a bachelor’s degree in industrial informatics and a master’s degree in computer techniques applied in electrical engineering.

Click to comment

Daily Briefing Newsletter

Subscribe to the SecurityWeek Email Briefing to stay informed on the latest threats, trends, and technology, along with insightful columns from industry experts.

Join us as we delve into the transformative potential of AI, predictive ChatGPT-like tools and automation to detect and defend against cyberattacks.


As cybersecurity breaches and incidents escalate, the cyber insurance ecosystem is undergoing rapid and transformational change.


Expert Insights

Related Content

Application Security

Cycode, a startup that provides solutions for protecting software source code, emerged from stealth mode on Tuesday with $4.6 million in seed funding.

Data Protection

The cryptopocalypse is the point at which quantum computing becomes powerful enough to use Shor’s algorithm to crack PKI encryption.

Identity & Access

Zero trust is not a replacement for identity and access management (IAM), but is the extension of IAM principles from people to everyone and...


Less than a week after announcing that it would suspended service indefinitely due to a conflict with an (at the time) unnamed security researcher...

Data Breaches

OpenAI has confirmed a ChatGPT data breach on the same day a security firm reported seeing the use of a component affected by an...

Artificial Intelligence

The CRYSTALS-Kyber public-key encryption and key encapsulation mechanism recommended by NIST for post-quantum cryptography has been broken using AI combined with side channel attacks.

Risk Management

The supply chain threat is directly linked to attack surface management, but the supply chain must be known and understood before it can be...

IoT Security

A group of seven security researchers have discovered numerous vulnerabilities in vehicles from 16 car makers, including bugs that allowed them to control car...