Facebook users previously encountered an unusual experience after thousands of users were involuntarily logged out from their online accounts. If you are one of the affected users, then it must be frustrating since you didn’t know if it was because of a hacker or other malicious actors’ schemes.
The surprising incident happened previously on Jan. 22. Facebook users complained that they received an error message “session expired” when they are trying to use their accounts.
Once they received the notification, Facebook will prompt the users to log back in. The forced logouts quickly led to false claims on social media with many users claiming that the update had occurred so that the social media platform could track their data and location information.
A Facebook post stated that “for those of you that were just logged out — it was an update that will now track all info on your phone! Take extra steps to protect your privacy!” The post quickly went viral and generated 18,000 shares.
The FB post was followed and accompanied by the test series of screenshots explaining how to disable “Off-Facebook Activity.”
Facebook reportedly installed a new user data tracking feature
Another allegation accuses the app that it has logged out thousands of users so that the app can properly install a new user data tracking feature the company seemed to have kept as a secret. Rumors claim that the new feature can track what businesses that users are visiting.
Speculations stated that the new tracking feature can keep a trail on where the users go and have been, even when they are logged off from their mobile applications or online accounts. Some users also shared their theories on why the app suddenly logged them out, but FB said that these are not the reasons why it happened.
Why did FB log out its users?
Although the social media company didn’t provide an immediate response regarding the accusations, the popular app said that the sudden massive logged out was caused by a configuration change.
FB said that “on January 22, a configuration change caused some people to be logged out of their Facebook accounts.”
The popular app added that they have “investigated the issue and fixed it for everyone earlier today. We’re sorry for the inconvenience.”
The previous massive logged’s wideness was not disclosed by the company. However, many news sources explained that most of the affected users are using iPhone smartphones. This means that the previous issue did not affect many Android users.
The iPhone users that have TFA or two-factor authentication enabled on their accounts were able to eventually get back into the app. But, some users complained that the SMS codes became slow, forcing others to upload photos of their ID to regain their access.
On the other hand, experts explained that the “Off-Facebook Activity” that users were claiming to be the reason was not a new update at all. They said that this change happened way back in January 2020.
The app’s tool allows users to have more control over how the popular social media platform traces their paths across the website. It also helps the app to receive users’ information so that the company can show relevant ads and help other businesses.