ChatGPT failure Monday was a little more problematic than it initially seemed.
According Bloomberg(Opens in a new tab), the AI chatbot was shut down due to a bug that exposed users’ chat history titles to other users. Titles could be seen in the left sidebar, which usually displays the user’s chat history, but details of users’ chats with ChatGPT were not visible.
A Reddit user posted a screenshot(Opens in a new tab) what the bug looked like in their browser. Instead of their own chat history, the sidebar was showing titles of someone else’s ChatGPT sessions, and another user was posting a similar screenshot.(Opens in a new tab) Similar reports(Opens in a new tab) were shared on Twitter(Opens in a new tab).
An OpenAI spokesperson confirmed the news to Bloomberg and said ChatGPT has been temporarily disabled following reports of the bug. The problem was caused by a bug in the open-source software that OpenAI was using, but the precise cause has still not been determined.
ChatGPT came back online on Monday, but the chat history is not yet available. “We have fully restored the ChatGPT service for all users. We continue to work to restore past chat history for users,” a review on OpenAI Status Dashboard(Opens in a new tab) said.
The problem was an unpleasant reminder that users should be careful what they type into ChatGPT (or any other similar service, for that matter). We asked OpenAI about the incident and what steps the company plans to take to prevent such issues in the future, and will update this post when we have a response.