Facebook Chat Disabled Due to Security Problem
Article by George Norman
On 06 May 2010
Thanks to popular social networking site Facebook you can see what your friends are up to, check out their latest statuses, their latest updates, their latest photos and so on. With the chat feature, you can talk to your friends in real time. Facebook has recently disabled the chat feature to plug a quite serious security problem.

Facebook users that tried to use Facebook Chat were greeted with a “down for maintenance” message the other day. This is because Facebook was busy plugging a security hole that allowed any Facebook friends to see your live chats and pending friend requests. All that friend had to do was type your name in the site’s built-in privacy preview page, and presto, he could see your private information


A hat tip goes to TechCrunch for first reporting this problem. A second hat tip goes to them for getting this statement from Facebook:

“For a limited period of time, a bug permitted some users’ chat messages and pending friend requests to be made visible to their friends by manipulating the “preview my profile” feature of Facebook privacy settings. When we received reports of the problem, our engineers promptly diagnosed it and temporarily disabled the chat function. We also pushed out a fix to take care of the visible friend requests which is now complete. Chat will be turned back on across the site shortly. We worked quickly to resolve this matter, ensuring that once the bug was reported to us, a solution was quickly found and implemented.”

The issue has been fixed and chat is back up and running.

This incident may be reason enough for some users to leave the social networking site. Speaking of which, there are some related news you should know about. Facebook has once again started to prompt people who “user Facebook regularly” to make Facebook.com their homepage (it did this back in 2008 for a short while). Regulars are presented with the following prompt when they access the social networking site.

Tags: Facebook, Facebook Chat, Security, Social networking
About the author: George Norman
George is a news editor.
You can follow him on Google+, Facebook or Twitter

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