March 16, 2012
A spammer has the Facebook profile with ID = 1. A huge glitch on Facebook?


UPDATE 2: Did Facebook delete my status update that mentions the erroneous Facebook ID? See bottom of this post. 

Take a look at this screenshot:

What you see is a Facebook profile with an ID = 1. Currently active on www.facebook.com/1. [UPDATEThe profile is now disabled again after some 24 hours]. This is very strange, since Mark Zuckerberg is supposed to have the first Facebook profile ever created. He has ID = 4 (www.facebook.com/4) and the story goes that the first three accounts were for initial testing and were since deleted. And every new Facebook profile since created has been assigned the next available integer for the profile ID (since adjusted to big integers).

But then this guy suddenly has the ID = 1, as if he was the first to create an account? How can that be?

Might he be one of the original creators working with Zuckerberg?

That seems higly unlikely, since his profile has only a handfull of friends and the latest posts is a link to a spam-classified website (It’s in the screen shot but was since removed). Those two facts actually meets the requirements for being classified as a genuine Facebook spammer.

This is something that just happened (and how I discovered the profile)

I’m a developer often working with projects using the Facebook Platform, and yesterday I was debugging an error where my page kept loading the profile information from the user with Facebook ID = 1 (which was not the user I wanted). So I kept getting the user name “Facebook User” with a link to a nonexisting profile. But then out of the blue the profile name changed value to “Jabir Albalushi”. I of course thought that my code was now fetching some random Facebook ID (since it was still not the user I wanted) but to my big surprice, the Facebook ID of this user was still “1”.

I went to the profile page, and surely the page now had the information from a real profile (that looked like a Facebook spammer) - and still with ID = 1

I also checked the Facebook API explorer to verify the data, and it showed the same result:

Joined Facebook twice

Oddly enough the user has the activity “Joined Facebook” showing twice. Maybe this has something to do with the fact, that the profile seems to have been active in 2010 - but just recently appeared with the ID = 1

It looks like a huge glitch in Facebook

The ID of a Facebook profile is a very important property for a Facebook User. Both on Facebook and on all the services and websites using the Facebook platform. It’s not something that should be able to change. And it’s not something that should be able to change to a previous user (in this case the original profiles, that were since deleted.

UPDATE 2: My Facebook post about this is gone!

My original status update pointing out the subject of this blog post has mysteriously disappeared! I had made a post (in danish) linking to the Facebook user with the ID = 1 and a few of my Facebook friends had commented. See a screenshot of the post here. But now the post and comments are gone completely. I still had the URL for the post since I still had the browser tab open, and it now shows the message “This content is currently unavailable”. Even to me, the owner of the status update.

So what happened here? First Facebook removes the profile and then they remove my post about it? 

I’m not that paranoid that I think they went specifically to delete my status update. But I think they might have a script, where they remove hazardous content from Facebook updates in general, and that they activated this function on all links to the profile when they realized the glitch. Either from a security perspective - or simply to erase all traces.

If anyone have any reasonable arguments that this is not a big deal, please chime in!

Use the comments below or write me on twitter @webhanspeter

  1. digitaletid posted this