- Facebook says it fixed the bug on August 24 that will had allowed users with both a good app and a Facebook Ads accounts to access the Facebook Analytics information of other apps.
- 10 advertisers accessed the analytics data of 21 apps throughout the three weeks the bug has been live.
- Though this affected a limited number of accounts, this news comes at a time of heightened consciousness around data security and comes after other mea culpas from the organization.
For three days in August, a small number of Facebook marketers figured out they could access the aggregated Facebook Analytics data of some other apps.
Facebook states a bug was introduced because the result of a code change upon August 2 . The bug allowed users with both an app plus Facebook advertising account to view SDK data in Facebook Analytics associated with other apps that also have Fb Ads accounts. Facebook is able to determine the accounts involved and states 21 app owners had their particular Facebook analytics data accessed simply by 10 advertisers.
“ Due to a bug in our system, a number of advertisers were able to view the dashboards associated with other Facebook Analytics advertisers. Simply no personal information about people on Fb was shared. We’ re remorseful for the error and have fixed the problem, ” said Joe Osborne, the Facebook spokesperson.
The business says it was alerted to the problem by a customer on August twenty-four and fixed the bug inside two hours. It then began examining the impact, and Facebook continues to be contacting the app owners plus advertisers involved this week.
How it worked, what information was accessed
Fb believes most of the advertisers happened on the bug while using the Facebook -pixel Helper, a Chrome browser plug-in to help users identify when the Fb Pixel is installed properly on the site. Using that tool, it’ s easy to find a site’ ersus Pixel ID. The advertisers could search another site’ s IDENTIFICATION that also has an app within Facebook Analytics and access their own app data dashboards. That is not said to be possible.
The dash data includes aggregated performance reviews on metrics such as new customers, unique users, app installs plus media sessions length. It would also provide been possible for the advertisers in order to click into the main insights webpages for those metrics. They would not be in a position to access the apps’ Facebook Advertisements accounts, however , even if they were from the Facebook Analytics accounts, the company states.
Audit and follow-up
Facebook is able to observe what users do within Fb Analytics, so it can tell what balances an advertiser accessed and how lengthy they spent in the accounts. The business doesn’ t believe, at this point, there was malicious intent, but can’ t guarantee competitors didn’ capital t see the data.
The business says it is conducting an review of whether any advertisers maintained any of the data (presumably having discovered from taking Cambridge Analytica’ s i9000 word this had deleted the Facebook data) and asking exactly why and how they accessed the balances.
It’ s not clear if there will be any consequences for that advertisers if it’ s decided they accessed the accounts merely out of curiosity. Accessing data with out authorization is against Facebook’ ersus terms of service, even in the situation of a bug.
Fb says it has made changes in order to its processes and added back-end systems improvements to ensure this doesn’ t happen again.
In June , Facebook apologized to developers to have an error that caused it to deliver weekly app performance reports in order to app testers who often function outside of the developers’ companies. That mistake affected roughly 3 percent associated with Facebook Analytics users. As with this particular bug, recipients saw aggregated application performance metrics, but no private information.
The company has been trying to shore up platform privacy throughout its ecosystem and to be more forth-coming in these situations. But as Fb is now well aware, it’ ersus running out of sorries.
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