Have you ever woken up after a night of too many Irish car bombs, only to find that you may have played a little fast and loose with your iPhone camera and your Facebook app? Yes, embarrassing photos happen to the best of us.
Your first response is to simply delete the offending photos, right? Well, now you can rest assured that those photos are actually gone from Facebook’s servers, and not just made invisible on the social network.
Ars Technica has confirmed that photos deleted from Facebook are now gone from their servers in a matter of days.
A matter of days? That sounds like a long time, right? It’s actually quick compared to what it was. Ars conducted a series of simple tests over the past few years, where they saved the direct CDN link to their “deleted photos” and checked periodically as to whether or not they were truly gone from the servers. They found that in some cases, Facebook was holding on to these photos for months at a time. Some were even reported to have stuck around for years.
But not anymore. You can finally have the piece of mind that deletion is more permanent, thanks to new Facebook policy.
“As a result of work on our policies and infrastructure, we have instituted a ‘max-age’ of 30 days for our CDN links,” Facebook told Ars. “However, in some cases the content will expire on the CDN much more quickly, based on a number of factors.”
Although Facebook never had a problem with pulling them off the site, peoples’ photos were floating around out there on the interwebs and could be accessed with a simple URL. It’s comforting to know that this issue seems to have been ironed out.