You snap a pic, send it to a specific user, and assume that it will be automatically deleted once it is viewed on the user’s Snapchat account. PLOT TWIST. Turns out that it isn’t this simple and unfortunately for some, thousands of these photos have been released on the internet. The Snapchat application itself was not hacked but third-party applications that store saved shots. Applications and websites like allow users to save otherwise “expired” photos so that users can return to them for viewing in the future. Though the images were taken using the application, Snapchat is admitting no fault because “Snapchatters were victimized by their use of third-party apps to send and receive Snaps, a practice that we expressly prohibit in our Terms of Use precisely because they compromise our users’ security.” Regardless of how the images were accessed or how they were initially shared, this event is yet another obvious reminder that what happens in technology does not stay hidden no matter what is promised.

Several of the applications being accused of hosting the leaked images claim that they do not store usernames and passwords, yet usernames are indeed attached to the approximately 90,000 images. Worst yet, many viewers of the released images have reported they contain child pornography. Many sites are now claiming that the Snappening is a hoax because the releaser cannot create a searchable database but the evidence stands: images were released without the users’ permission. As with all similar photo releases, we advise all readers refrain from searching for these images and to be more cognizant of what you share on the internet. It’s not as safe a place as you may have been led to believe.

Snapchat Snappening

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