The Irish regulator said on Friday it was conducting a search on Facebook Inc. after the company revealed that an error may have exposed private photos of 6,8 million users.
Irish Data Protection Commissioner (DPC), Facebook's main regulator in the European Union, said it was investigating whether the company complied with strict new EU privacy regulations following the announcement of the latest breach.
Facebook of course stated that it is in close contact with the Irish regulator and will be happy to answer any questions.
Facebook revealed photo leakage on Friday, indicating that it allowed approximately 1.500 applications to access private photos for 12 days until September 25.
"We are sorry this happened," Facebook said in a blog post developers.
European data protection legislation requires companies to report any data breaches within 72 hours, giving regulators the power to impose fines up to 4% of annual total revenues.
Facebook has said it will alert all users whose photos may have leaked.
The problem naturally undermines Facebook's efforts to assure users and regulators that it has enhanced security, according to many internet analysts.
"We already have a lot of evidence to support the view that Facebook is arrogant, prioritizing growth over other factors," said Brian Wieser, an analyst at Pivotal Research.
Any new reporting of errors and breaches increases the possibility of government surveillance with special rules on Facebook, said George Salmon, Hargreaves Lansdown analyst.
"Facebook is reasonably trying to regain the trust of its users, but this effort will not work if stories like this continue to emerge," said Salmon.
The error affected users who gave some third-party applications access to their photos.