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Embarrassing Facebook glitch exposes users ‘stalking’ strangers

Meta has apologised for a glitch in which Facebook sent friend requests to every profile that a user had viewed — leaving a number of users embarrassed and rushing to delete the requests, or, in some cases, their entire accounts.

“We fixed a bug related to a recent app update that caused some Facebook friend requests to be sent mistakenly,” a spokesperson for Meta told The Daily Beast. “We’ve stopped this from happening and we apologise for any inconvenience this may have caused.”

According to accounts on other social media platforms like Twitter, it caused plenty of inconvenience.

“As someone with a severe nosiness problem, this Facebook auto friend request glitch is very spooky and uncool with me,” one Twitter user with the username Lucy wrote.

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Last Friday, following a Facebook app update, users began sending out a stream of warnings on other social media platforms about the dangers of using the platform when their “nosiness” could be exposed to the very people whose profiles they’d been viewing.

The Daily Mail quoted one social media user as writing that the glitch amounted to the “end of stalking.”

Now that Meta has fixed the glitch, there is presumably less need to worry. For some, however, the damage may be done.

“Facebook update s*cks!” another Twitter user wrote. “It automatically sent a friend request to account you stalked, lmao Imagine you stalked your ex or your enemy and they received a friend request notification.”

There was some question over whether the glitch affected Apple phone users in the same way that it did Android users, but the glitch likely is not good news for a platform that has struggled to maintain the attention and affection of younger social media users who have migrated to platforms like Snapchat and TikTok in recent years.