A major flaw allowed children to chat with random people on Facebook’s Messenger Kids


It’s another day, which means another slip-up from Facebook and friends. This time Facebook’s Messenger app for kids, designed to let them chat safely with humans that are pre-approved by their guardians, allowed those kids to connect with random adults. 

A newly discovered flaw in the Messenger for Kids app allowed children to participate in group chats with adults who aren’t approved by the ‘rents. Over the past week, Facebook has been sending parents messages saying a technical error allowed children to participate in unauthorised groups, and that it has closed these chats. 

Lost touch

The message sent to affected Messenger accounts states that this ‘technical error’ allowed a given child/child’s friend to create a group chat containing members not approved by the parent. “We want you to know that we’ve turned off this group chat and are making sure that group chats like this won’t be allowed in the future.”

Though Facebook seems appropriately contrite, we don’t  know the actual nature of the flaw, or how many children were found in illicit groups. Absent this info, it’s an idea to more closely regulate kids’ internet usage. Up to and including which groups they’re joining. It’s a good idea to keep it one-on-one unless a parent has eyeballed the whole situation, yeah?

Luckily, Saffa children are marked safe, as the app isn’t available in our country. So… bullet dodged there. It is currently only available in five countries — the US, Canada, Mexico, Thailand, and Peru.

Source: The Verge


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Digital Editor at Stuff. Nevermind the fancy title, I like writing about things that are cool. Like games, gadgets and sometimes even software. Depending on how cool it is.

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