Facebook users for iOS found that the application quietly activates the camera on their devices while they scroll through a feed or view photos on a social network.
The user Joshua Maddux was the first to accidentally pay attention to the problem. On his Twitter, he published a video in which he demonstrated that surveillance can be detected by working with Facebook for iOS: to do this, open any photo or video in full screen. When the application returns to its normal state after full-screen mode, it will slightly shift to the right and you will notice that the iPhone camera is active and working for some reason in the background.
Found a @facebook #security & #privacy issue. When the app is open it actively uses the camera. I found a bug in the app that lets you see the camera open behind your feed. Note that I had the camera pointed at the carpet. pic.twitter.com/B8b9oE1nbl
– Joshua Maddux (@JoshuaMaddux) November 10, 2019
This oddity immediately attracted the attention of other Facebook users, and many of them tried to reproduce the problem on their devices, but most failed. However, some users and journalists of the publication managed to reproduce the bug. The next webconfirming Maddox information.
Facebook app on iOS 13.2.2 opens my phone’s rear camera when I open a profile photo swipe down to return (look at the little slit on the left of the video). Is this an app bug or an iOS bug ?? @facebook @AppleSupport pic.twitter.com/WlhSXZulqx
– Daryl Lasafin (@dzlasafin) November 10, 2019
Maddox writes that he was able to provoke a bug on at least five different iPhones with the latest iOS 13.2.2 on board. On the iPhone running iOS 12, it was not possible to see the camera, but users say that this does not mean that it does not work.
Android users were not able to find anything similar on their devices.
To date, Facebook representatives have not yet commented on the situation. But users and experts who drew attention to the situation, so far are inclined to conclude that we are talking about some kind of bug, but not about special spyware functionality of the application.
Numerous user experiences, meanwhile, helped to understand that for an error to occur, the user must allow the Facebook application to use the camera, and the iPhone must be running iOS 13.2.2. Therefore, users are urged to temporarily ban Facebook from using the camera and microphone of the device. You can revoke permissions in the settings:> Privacy> Camera> Facebook and Privacy> Microphone> Facebook.