Awkward Instagram error

It may seem uncomfortable now, but the shift in social media domination is already in motion. Instagram and Facebook are the two most popular apps in the world, and they combine to reach more than 1 billion people every day.

The case

A bug in one of the Facebook-owned photo-sharing service’s APIs was accidentally introduced, allowing anyone to view users’ private data, provided they knew how to use the API. Besides user names, email addresses and phone numbers could also be obtained. Indeed, someone has taken advantage of this opportunity, as some celebrities’ details can already be found online.

Did you know?

When a company has an API, it gives programmers access to its information and tools. In 2012, Facebook introduced an API for Instagram that allowed developers to create apps without asking for permission from Instagram itself. This was meant to make apps easier for Facebook users, but one API bug made this feature riskier than intended.


Social media apps are a big part of our everyday lives, whether we use them to share pictures and videos with friends or to view exciting content shared by others. But when an API in one such social app has a bug that allows users to view other people’s data without their permission, the app loses its trustworthiness.