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Facebook claims reports that ‘bug’ is displaying private messages on users’ walls is false


By The Drum Team, Editorial

September 24, 2012 | 2 min read

Reports initially surfaced from France that a ‘bug’ was causing non-public messages between friends on Facebook to be published publically on Timelines.

Metro France revealed that messages sent between 2007 and 2009 have been appearing on users’ walls, while Le Nouvel Observateur also reported that private correspondences between 2010 and 2012 were also affected.

Users have been advised by Metro France and Le Nouvel Observateur that it is not symptomatic, but for anyone affected a quick fix is to edit the privacy options on individual posts by clicking the ‘pencil’ icon at the top right of posts.

Despite these reports, the BBC's Facebook contact issued a statement claiming that the information was 'false' saying: "[The] messages were older wall posts that had always been visible on the users' profile pages. Facebook is satisfied that there has been no breach of user privacy."

Conversely, a French Facebook representative told Le Huffington Post that the bug exists and that a technical team is investigating and a Spanish rep told El Huffington Post that the company is looking into the problem. asked its readers to report when and where it was happening, finding the affected countries have included Brazil, Canada, France, Israel, the Netherlands, the UK, and the US.

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