Thanks to a Google bug, the Photos application exported video files of some users to archives of strangers. The “technical issue” took place in November 2019 but it took Google over two months to report the bug. The information came out now after the company mailed the affected users reporting the issue to them. Also Read - Google search now lets users recharge their prepaid mobile packs on the go
The email also mentioned that the Google Photos archive downloaded did not have the complete content for export. The issue strikes the Google Takeout service that allows users to download their data from the company’s servers. According to mail, the blunder took place between November 21 and 25 last year. The data ‘leak’ happened to users who had requested a data export through Google Takeout. This means that unless you performed the export, your videos were likely not involved. Also Read - Meet the man who hacked Google Maps with 99 smartphones in a cart to create a 'traffic jam'
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The email, which a Redditor shared, also stated that “unfortunately, during this time, some videos in Google Photos were incorrectly exported to unrelated user’s archives. One or more videos in your Google Photos account was affected by this issue.” Also Read - Google launches Coronavirus SOS with WHO to provide quick access to information and live updates
Here’s what Google had to say about the bug
Google has now fixed the bug, stating that “the underlying issue has been identified and resolved.” Further, the company also urged users to delete the prior export and make a fresh export of their content. A company spokesperson revealed to Gadgets360 that the company “conducted an in-depth analysis of the issue” to prevent something like this from happening again in the future.
“We are notifying people about a bug that may have affected users who used Google Takeout to export their Google Photos content between November 21 and November 25. These users may have received either an incomplete archive or videos—not photos—that were not theirs. We fixed the underlying issue and have conducted an in-depth analysis to help prevent this from ever happening again. We are very sorry this happened,” the spokesperson said.