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Facebook’s Messenger Bug Revealed Who You Were Chatting With

The popular chat platform used by millions on Facebook was hit with a bug that revealed details.

Published
Tech News
2 min read
Facebook Messenger is the go-to chatting app for millions of Facebook users.
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Facebook aspires to become a secured social platform, after all these years of leak and privacy issues. But Mark Zuckerberg surely has his work cut out, to live up to his ambitious promise.

This time it’s a bug in Facebook Messenger, which allowed websites to gain access to users' data, including who they have been chatting with, say researchers.

Now fixed by Facebook, the vulnerability in the web version of Messenger allowed any website to expose who you have been messaging, revealed Ron Masas, researcher with cyber security company Imperva, in a blog post late on Thursday.

The researcher reported the vulnerability to Facebook under their responsible disclosure programme and the social media platform mitigated the issue.

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In November 2018, Masas and his team discovered a Facebook bug that allowed websites to extract data from users' profiles via cross-site frame leakage (CSFL) which is known as a side-channel attack performed on an end user's web browser.

"Browser-based side-channel attacks are still an overlooked subject. While big players like Facebook and Google are catching up, most of the industry is still unaware," wrote Masas.

Facebook Messenger has over 1.3 billion users globally.

Zuckerberg on Thursday said he is working to make Facebook "privacy-focused" like WhatsApp.

The "privacy-focused platform" will be built around principles like private interactions, encryption, reducing permanence, safety and interoperability.

Despite Zuckerberg's plan to make Facebook privacy-focused, the latest report suggests that the platform is not immune to vulnerabilities.

In December 2018, Facebook admitted that about 6.8 million users might have put their private photos at risk of being exposed to third-party apps.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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