Facebook's blocking feature enables users to restrict certain individuals from viewing anything on their timeline, tagging them in any post, or starting conversations with them on the Messenger app. Blocked users are also unable to send a friend request to the person who blocked them, while blocked friends are unfriended automatically.
In a blog post today, the tech giant has confirmed that parts of this blocking system were compromised by a bug that was active between May 29 and June 5. As a result, over 800,000 users were subjected to at least one of the person on their blocked list being temporarily unblocked.
Erin Egan, Chief Privacy Officer at Facebook, mentioned the components of the blocking mechanism that were affected, along with some other details:
- It did not reinstate any friend connections that had been severed;
- 83% of people affected by the bug had only one person they had blocked temporarily unblocked; and
- Someone who was unblocked might have been able to contact people on Messenger who had blocked them.
It should be noted that in the week or so this bug remained active, a large majority of users had only a single person from their blocked list temporarily unblocked. In any case, starting today, anyone who was affected by this bug is being sent out a notification by the company, as can be viewed in the picture above. It suggests that users check their blocked lists, and reassures them that the issue has now been resolved.
You can get additional information regarding blocking someone on Facebook here.
Source and image: Facebook Newsroom