Facebook security flaw let children chat with strangers

Facebook’s Messenger Kids app has allowed some children to enter into group chats with users who are not on their approved list of contacts, The Verge reports.

The bug came about due to the way permissions are applied in group chats – which becomes complicated when a user is on some of the children’s approved lists, but not others.

In some of these cases, the child who started the group could invite anyone who was on their approved list – even if that user wasn’t approved by the other childrens’ parents.

Facebook has reportedly been closing down the offending group chats and alerting the affected users’ parents.

“We recently notified some parents of Messenger Kids account users about a technical error that we detected affecting a small number of group chats,” a Facebook representative said.

“We turned off the affected chats and provided parents with additional resources on Messenger Kids and online safety.”

Messenger Kids is designed for children under the age of 13 and was already a controversial platform, with certain US privacy groups claiming that the app doesn’t abide by relevant privacy laws.

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Facebook security flaw let children chat with strangers