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The safety and security of Facebook users personal details online have been put further into question after it is revealed that a bug within the system has left over 6 million users phone numbers and other personal information exposed.

Just over a week after whistle blower Edward Snowdon revealed how 9 top internet technology companies including Facebook have been sharing users personal information with the US government further doubts have been cast upon the safety of users personal information when it has emerged that a bug has left 6 million users data exposed.

 

The bug within the system has since been fixed after Facebook’s white hat security programme found that a tool which allowed users to download their information allowed users to access personal information of others who they were connected with on the site. The email addresses and telephone numbers of over six million people were given out to other users “once or twice”.  The tool allowed users to download other users’ data which had been input into the site. Facebook said that they were “upset and embarrassed” by the situation and moved to quickly apologise to those affected.

 

Facebook claim that no financial information was leaked during the bug and in most cases the only information shared was users email addresses and phone numbers. The site acted quickly by disabling the tool and fixing the bug before re-enabling the tool the next day. The site also issued a statement claiming it always looks to improve user security. “Your trust is the most important asset we have, and we are committed to improving our safety procedures and keeping your information safe and secure.”

 

The information which individuals share online is increasing rapidly as more people use social networking sites. Many people are leaving a large digital footprint online and the affect which this can have upon individuals and businesses has become more important.