Facebook Security Flaw: View Friend’s LiveChat’s & Requests!

May 5th, 2010 - 9:25 pm ICT by Angela Kaye Mason  

Facebook Hacked May 5 (THAINDIAN NEWS) Well once again there is a major flaw in Facebook’s security. Honestly the more people are hearing about these issues with Facebook, the more of my friends are considering leaving, and after all, that is why people are on the social networking site to begin with-their friends. It is not because we all love Facebook’s games or applications, it is because our friends and family are here…so once our friends begin to move elsewhere, it stands to reason, we will follow.

So what is the security issue this time? Well, a tip from my boss about an article he saw from ‘Techcrunch.com’ showed me how, with just a few clicks of my mouse, I could be partially signed into my friends’ profiles. Yes I tried it out, but only on people whom I knew personally, and either already knew their information, or had their permission. What I discovered was quite shocking. I was able to see every friend request those few friends had, and for a time, could see their live chats as well. As I was writing this, and trying to sign into chat again to see it in action, I got a notice which read “Facebook chat is down for maintenance, please try again later. No, this apparently does not mean they are fixing the problem immediately. They ‘expect’ to have it fixed by 10 am EST…tomorrow.

And all it took for me to see your profile information, chats, and friend requests was a few clicks…(no I could not see anyone’s inbox messages….) First, go to “Account” at the upper right of the screen, and click it. Then scroll down to “Privacy Settings”. Click that and look in the center of the page, click “Personal Information and Posts” , then “Preview My Profile”. In the little box right next to the words “Preview how your profile appears to a specific person:”, type the name of the person whose friend requests (or chat if they re-open it without fixing it) you wish to see into the box.

I actually had to retype the name 2 or three times to get it to work. If they have any friend requests…you will be able to see them as if they were yours. You can tel for sure if you are in their profile or not by going back to “Account” and clicking. Once you are in their profile…you will see their name where your belongs. Hopefully, Facebook gets this fixed soon. As I told my boss, ’security issues’ don’t worry me too much because I never really put anything online anywhere without assuming someone can read it…but I still feel Facebook really needs to rethink their ‘open’ policies on where our information goes. Otherwise, my friends and I, along with millions, just might migrate to distant websites, off into the sunset, where our privacy is respected.

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