Online stalking is really scary and no different than any other form of stalking. A lot of the users who are online stalkers would not only just stalk a Facebook profile of someone whom they happen to know but do not interact otherwise, but they do so to anyone whom they have never even met. Facebook has been facing a lot of issues regarding its online privacy policies and failure at some points not to make users feel safe.
But now Facebook has reportedly fixed its new privacy loophole according to ZDNet. It has addressed the issue within 48 hours as per its claim. Being the world’s largest social networking site, it is important for Facebook to look into these issues themselves rather than being informed by some other researchers who had happened to pick up their loopholes. Wonder what other loopholes are still might be in their system!
The privacy loophole was actually pointed out by the computer scientists from the University College London who noticed the ongoing profile stalking which is not easily detectable. It means a user would not know that they have been stalked and his or her profile viewed. Thus, without detection there could not even be a stopping to it.
To address the issue, the researchers did two things to tackle Facebook’s systemic flaws. First it allowed users to deactivate and reactivate their accounts in an unlimited way and secondly, since an account being deactivated, the privacy settings could not be changed. But since then, Facebook fixed the problem. Facebook’s spokesperson said in a statement that:
“Earlier this week a team of security researchers described a theoretical flaw in our user interface; users have been previously unable to unfriend deactivated accounts. We quickly worked to resolve this issue, and were able to deploy a modification to our UI within 48 hours of receiving these reports.”
However, Facebook is said to be unhappy how someone else detected such a loophole in their system and then published a paper on their findings. Because once the researchers’ report was published it had already become public, but Facebook preferred to be informed privately about the matter. It is still unknown what technically Facebook did to cover up the loophole and fix it finally. But now Facebook users can unfriend deactivated users which will allow their friendship connections not to be abused.
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