Snapchat Glitches Revealed By Snapchat Leaked
This message will self-destruct in 10 seconds… Or will it? Snapchat, the popular app that has taken the world by storm—especially among the teen set—is designed for users to send photos to one another without fear said photos can be saved or fall into the wrong hands in the future. How? The app is programmed to delete the shared photos within 10 seconds of their initial viewing. Sounds way too good to be true, right? And as it turns out, it is.
New Web sites that exploit certain Snapchat glitches are now emerging, and posting those not-so-secret nudie pics for the world to see. How? Apparently Snapchat users can take a screenshot of photos before they delete. And although Snapchat warns users if their photos have been screenshot, this is one case that knowing is not half the battle. So Sue gets a warning that Fred took a screenshot of that tit pic she sent him. So what? It’s not as if she can do anything about it, unless she’s in a position to confiscate and destroy Fred’s phone. And how likely is that? What happens to that not-so-modest photo of her kahunas after that is completely out of her hands.
Snapchat Sluts has been posting nudie pics from Snapchat for several months now, but a new site, Snapchat Leaked, is getting a lot more attention recently. Facebook has already taken down its page, although a copy-cat profile, Snapchats Leaked, has already replaced it. Most of the photos posted to the Facebook page are pretty lame, but there are a couple risqué pics that cleverly cover certain body parts with the page’s logo. As for the Snapchat Leaked Web site? Well, you can’t actually access it without first completing a bunch of third-party surveys. I spent more than 10 minutes trying to fill them all out before I finally gave up. But someone more committed to seeing what’s there might have better luck.
The point isn’t necessarily whose photos are on the site, however, as much as how they got there. Earlier this month, digital forensics examiner Richard Hickman said Snapchat’s claims of self-destructing photos aren’t technically correct. Hickman explained how photos can be retrieved, transferred and saved.
“The actual app is even saving the picture,” Hickman told Utah-based news outlet KSL. “They claim that it’s deleted, and it’s not even deleted. It’s actually saved on the phone.“
It may not be easy to find the “saved” photos, but it can certainly be accomplished. According to the company for which Hickman works, Utah’s Decipher Forensics, Snapchat photos can be found hidden in a phone’s data cache, then shared with anyone a user wants. Decipher said, however, that the search requires special forensics software that costs several hundred dollars. Decipher offers to uncover photos for parents and law enforcement officials for $300 to $500.
“This type of information can be very valuable in any investigation, especially one involving exploitation of a minor,” Hickman said in a statement released this week by Decipher. “This research will help law enforcement officials retrieve what has been believed to be unrecoverable.”
But Hickman wasn’t 100-correct in his assertions that the average user can’t access deleted Snapchat photos. According to a Buzzfeed report from December, videos sent via Snapchat are locally stored on a phone and are easily accessible with a free file browser. Basically, if a user doesn’t open the video once it’s received, a phone can be plugged into a computer and the files can be accessed through a browser such as iFunBox. The user can then navigate to the Snapchat folder in the browser and open a subfolder called “tmp.” The stored videos can then be copied to the computer.
Of course, the founders of Snapchat have said all along that photos really disappear and aren’t saved anywhere. Earlier this month in an appearance on The Colbert Report, co-founder Bobby Murphy explained how a piece of code follows each photo and permanently deletes it.
But when faced with the actual process to save the photos, co-founder Evan Spiegel brushed it off, telling Buzzfeed saving the photos “spoils the fun.”
“The people who most enjoy using Snapchat are those who embrace the spirit and intent of the service. There will always be ways to reverse engineer technology products,” Spiegel said.
I don’t know what world Spiegel is living in, but here on Earth there are a lot of people who can’t be trusted. Is he really under the impression that the only people who use his app are those who have honest intentions? Sure, and a think I just felt a monkey fly out of my ass, too.