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Why Is Facebook Sending Friend Requests Without My Permission?

Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014 by | Filed Under: Cool Sites, Using The Internet

Theresa from New York writes: A friend accepted a Facebook friend request that I “sent,” only I never sent one. Do you know what’s going on?

Although Facebook’s support page specifically says this situation you described can’t possibly happen, there are forums across the Internet filled with people complaining about this very issue. While it’s not entirely clear why this happens, it probably shouldn’t be too surprising that issues like friend requests getting sent or received without any user input occur occasionally.

The world’s most used social network currently has more than a billion people signed up, with Facebook stating that around 750 million people log in daily. With a network that huge – and with frequent changes being rolled out – its no wonder that glitches occur from time to time, especially considering the way Facebook has been changing its “reach” and “sponsored posts” algorithms, affecting who sees what and from whom.

If someone accepted a friend request you didn’t send, be sure to first report the issue at this location, as providing feedback about it can help to ensure the problem gets fixed and it doesn’t occur again.

After reporting the issue, you can simply remove the unwanted person from your friends list. Head over to their Facebook profile, click the “Friends” button near the top of the screen, and then select the “Unfriend” option.

Removing a Facebook Friend

If you don’t want to potentially hurt the person’s feelings by un-friending them, you can instead set it so their posts don’t appear in your feed even though you remain “friends” (of course, they will still be able to see and comment on YOUR posts).

Click the “Friends” icon and then select the “Get Notifications” option. With that option removed, only those posts from that person that Facebook deems “important” (containing key words about life events like “pregnancy,” “divorce,” etc.) will appear in your feed.

If the person’s posts continue to appear in your feed and they are still able to comment on your updates, you can always block them, which prevents all communication of any kind. Just simply choose the “Report/Block” option in the list and follow the prompts.

In the event that friend requests continue to be sent without your knowledge, be sure to change your Facebook password and run a full spyware scan on your computer, as someone else may be accessing your account. 

~ Ty Arthur

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43 Responses to “Why Is Facebook Sending Friend Requests Without My Permission?”

  1. Cilita Garcia says:

    I,too, have received friend requests never sent to me by that person. Also, people have received requests which I have never sent. Please correct this in your system. It is very embarrasing & and uncomfortsble

    • Jordan says:

      This has happened 3 times to me i didn’t even add the person I know I didn’t cause I never went on Facebook that day

  2. Janet Moskowitz says:

    I received a notice that someone accepted a friend request but I never sent one to this person.
    It is unfortunate because I know her from years ago but would not have friended her. I
    I do not know how this happens but I don’t like it.
    This problem needs to be fixed.

  3. Colleen says:

    This has happened to me twice. I’ve gotten notifications saying these people accepted my friend request that I didn’t send. I don’t even know either of these people and don’t know how they could have received friend requests from me without me knowing. I wish Facebook would fix this problem because it’s ridiculous and dangerous.

  4. Diane says:

    This has happened to me four times now ! I have gotten notifications that my friend request has been accepted, when I never sent a request. This is upsetting, embarrassing, and just plain ridiculous ! Please fix this bug !

  5. Gina says:

    I did not send a friend request and it showed that I did. His has happened before and it’s very frustrating.

  6. Melvyn glintenkamp says:

    Facebook have sent several friend requests to people I don’t no last to someone in Canada .to me there breaching there terms of use and putting the security of my account at risk .not only is it wrong surely its illegal

  7. Church617 says:

    This is happening to me at least twice a week. It started about two months ago. I’m really getting tired of having to get on Facebook just to unfriendly people from across the country I’ve never met or even heard of.

  8. Glaplante says:

    This is happening daily now. NOT impressed. Awkward when someone from 30 years ago “sends” a friend request and hasn’t used fb since 2012. What’s with THAT??

  9. Anonymous says:

    Happened to my mom sent out friend request to 40 different people from other parts of the world.

  10. Katie says:

    I got a message from someone asking if they knew me because I sent them a friend request. I did not and told them so, they then sent me a screen shot of “my request”. This is creepy and a violation of the fb user agreement, so it needs to stop ASAP. I never add anybody I don’t know!

  11. David says:

    This happened to me last night when I was out and my phone was left on charge very embarrassing as one of the requests was to a young girl I am 65 this could have caused me a great deal of trouble lucky enough Iknow the family

  12. Jude says:

    I joined Facebook in August and within a couple of days my friend contacted me to say he just received my friend request, I told him I didn’t send a friend request. He thought I was lying and he proceed to confirming it. Till date he doesn’t believe I didn’t send it. This is very frustrating annoying and very awkward. I wish I could give Facebook a piece of my mind.
    Other similar incidents also occurred several times.

  13. Linda Martinez says:

    This has happened to me too, it has caused no end of trouble. I wish the system could be tightened up to stop this. My friend request does not even show the person concerned, but I have had contact from a very angry person, who never the less got the unwanted invitation.

  14. M. Long says:

    At least twice in the past several months, I have had people accept ‘Friend’ requests that I never sent. And I suspect I am getting requests from people who may not know their account is doing that. Since, so far anyway, we all know each other (friends of friends, and it’s also a school reunion site), there isn’t much we can do. But it is now obvious that it does happen, and it’s even more obvious that Facebook, by their abject silence on the matter also knows it’s happening and either can’t, or won’t do anything about it. Especially since they are constantly encouraging members to increase their friend size. If you won’t do it yourself, they’ll just help you along. Something is going on, and it’s not pleasant…or honest

  15. Kelly says:

    I got a notice that my friend request was accepted. I live in California and this “friend” lives in Finland! I don’t know the person and didn’t send the request. What is up on this and how do I stop it from happening again?

  16. Greg says:

    I have never been on face book and I get notifications from personal friends that didn’t send the notification.(people I have never emailed or contacted) I feel I’m being stalked and it’s very creepy. This has stopped me from joining face book altogether. Why and how are they stalking me?

  17. Asmaa says:

    It’s really creepy and silly to find a notification from my friend’s brother that he accepted my friend request as I don’t know him and it was my first time to see his account. I am really embarrassed and I deactivated my account because I am really don’t know what should I telling her!!!!

  18. Annoyed says:

    I received 2 unsolicited “friend” acceptances today. The first from my Aunty and the second from my sister in laws brother. Yes, I know both of these people personally, however, I DID NOT request them to be friends. How can someone who is friends with my “actual” friends, that is my mother and sister in law accept a friend request when I did not invite them. Whilst I know these people in real life, how can they become my “virtual friends” without my request?

  19. Marcia says:

    Obviously from the volume of complaints, this is a Facebook issue , not something people are doing by mistake. Why is Facebook not addressing this concern ?

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