Snapchat continues to gain popularity amidst the discovery of a critical bug
This entry was posted on Saturday, December 29, 2012.
Picture chatting has received a recent popularity bump with Snapchat and its Facebook clone, named Poke. Snapchat let you send pictures to your friends, which come with a self destructive timer. When the photo or video has been viewed and after the timer runs out, the photo or video disappears from the app forever. Snapchat has been gaining tremendous popularity among teens, who continue to use it despite the security risks such a service presents.
Snapchat has taken a number of security measures to prevent the users from saving the media they receive. While users might take screenshot of the image they receive, the sender will be immediately notified. Also, any photo or video can only be viewed for a maximum of 10 seconds, while the sender has the option to set the timer as low as 1 second. These precautions might make the service safe for casual chatting, but not safe enough for sending highly sensitive data.
A bug has been recently discovered, due to which expired videos can still be accessed by using a simple file explorer for iPhone. The surprising part is, those videos remain on the phone memory even after being deleted completely from within the app. Anyone can permanently save the video by connecting their iPhone to the computer, and accessing the iOS file system using a file manager. The bug is present in Facebook’s Poke as well, and is being fixed right now. It should suffice to say that both these services are far from perfect and should be used with caution.