Sharing a secret with other people

Q: Someone told me a secret and I promised not to tell anyone. However, because the person who told me the secret started telling others with whom he is not even close. I ended up telling someone else the secret. I know this is wrong and an act of hypocrisy. How do I go about in making taubah and making up for this sin?

A: The law of Shariah is that if a person confides in you and informs you of something personal (and the secret which he tells you is such that it does not involve usurping the rights of any servant or breaking the command of Allah Ta'ala), then it is not permissible for you to disclose the person's secret to anyone. Disclosing the person's secret amounts to a major sin. If you have committed this sin, then you should inform the person of what you have done and seek his forgiveness.

Note: If the secret is related to some incident that had transpired and then the person himself began informing people in general about what had transpired (not just few selected people), then in this case, since the information no longer remained a secret due to it becoming public news, disclosing this information will not be regarded as impermissible.

And Allah Ta'ala (الله تعالى) knows best.


Answered by:

Mufti Zakaria Makada

Checked & Approved:

Mufti Ebrahim Salejee (Isipingo Beach)