Snapchat’s New Privacy Policy freaks out Users

Snapchat’s New Privacy Policy freaks out Users
The Siliconreview
10 November, 2015

Snapchat, the popular video and photo messaging app shocked the whole internet when it made changes to its terms of service and privacy policy. The new policy is completely different to the old ones and it did away with Snapchat’s most important privacy statement “Delete is our default”.

Snapchat was launched in 2011 with its unique selling point of deleting a message after it is has been viewed by a user. The app became popular as it allowed users to send discrete personal messages to each other. The app currently has over 100 million active monthly users. The new privacy policy came as a huge blow to users as it no longer valued privacy.

After the whole internet exploded with serious backlash regarding this policy, the company released the following clarifying statement in a blog post.

At the center of concern is something we’ve seen play out again and again on social networks—namely, that Snapchat owns your content and, in a Snapchat-specfic twist, will no longer delete it from their servers, as they previously claimed. If true, it would be a pretty concerning change considering Snapchat’s a prime target for government data requests.

The reason as to why the company felt the need to change its terms was that it wanted to offer terms in a more natural language which has unfortunately backfired. Snapchat also added a section about in-app payments to its terms of service, and clarified what content is visible to people you aren’t connected to on Snapchat. In its blog post, Snapchat emphasized that the company’s policy about automatically deleting snaps and chats from its servers hasn’t changed.

The new privacy policy has four paragraphs that explain how deletion works. That includes an explanation of how it does, in fact, retain backups of users content for a “limited period of time or as required by law.”