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LinkedIn blames bug for clipboard snooping discovered by iOS 14

Credit: LinkedIn

Last updated

LinkedIn claims that clipboard snooping behavior, recently revealed in the firm's iOS app by a new iOS 14 data privacy feature, is caused by a software bug.

On Thursday, a portfolio portal developer testing Apple's iOS 14 beta release discovered that the LinkedIn app was copying the contents of their clipboard after every keystroke. When ZDNet reached out to LinkedIn, the company said the issue was tied to a bug in its software.

A day later, LinkedIn product engineering head Erran Berger added more detail about the issue on Twitter, writing that the company had traced the bug to a "code path that only does an equality check clipboard contents and the currently typed content in a text box."

"We don't store or transmit the clipboard contents," Berger wrote, adding that a fix for the issue is on the way.

With iOS 14, Apple will introduce a simple mechanism that notifies users when an app reads contents from their system clipboard. The feature was introduced at WWDC just three months after a pair of developers revealed that the practice was rampant among popular apps.

The LinkedIn controversy comes a week after TikTok, one of the most popular apps in the world, said it would stop snooping on user clipboards after iOS 14 revealed that it was doing just that. TikTok said that the snooping was an anti-spam measure.

Although the iOS 14 feature is raising awareness of clipboard snooping, many apps still carry on with the practice. On Sunday, 54 out of 56 top apps that were found to read the contents of a user's clipboard were still snooping.