The film was shot in Cape Town, South Africa. Although the film was produced by the German director Simon Verhoeven and German production companies, the largely English-speaking cast required that the film be shot in English. Filming ended in March 2014.
Originally titled "Unknown Error," the film was later renamed internationally to avoid confusion with Unfriended (2014). In Germany, Friend Request is titled "Unfriend" since Unfriended (2014) was released as "Unknown User" in that country.