Home » Hackers leak unauthorised Snapchat pictures and videos

Hackers leak unauthorised Snapchat pictures and videos

Average Snapchat users may find themselves in the same position celebrities such as Jennifer Lawrence: with nude photos posted unauthorised online.

At least 100,000 compromising Snapchat photos and videos are in the process of being leaked onto popular online forum 4Chan, the same site that housed the first leaked nude photos of actress Jennifer Lawrence and other celebrities.

Hackers were able to collect user photos and videos sent through a third-party app that lets you save Snapchat transmissions. Within the traditional Snapchat app, photos and videos that users send to friends “disappear” after several seconds.

On its Twitter feed, the messaging service confirmed that users photos had been compromised, but that they “were victimized by their use of third-party apps to send and receive Snaps, a practice that we expressly prohibit in our ToU.”

A second tweet, Snapchat said, “We can confirm that Snapchat’s servers were never breached and were not the source of these leaks.”

Underground photo-trading chat rooms have been abuzz recently with a big event, Business Insider reported. 4chan users have downloaded 13 Gigabytes’ worth of photos and videos and are creating a database to search the stolen images. Snapchat photos and user names were saved on the third-party site SnapSaved.com, which has since gone out of service online, according to Business Insider’s report.

Whether or not Snapchat’s servers were breached, there exists technology “that would prevent these types of situations,” said Hagai Bar-El, chief technology officer for Sansa Security. “To protect against future (attacks), it’s important to deploy authenticated connectivity to the server using provisioned keys running in isolated code. With that in place, the server could be made to refuse to talk to non-clients.”

There is concern that since Snapchat, which Yahoo reportedly is set to invest in, skews to a younger crowd, many of the photos will be of minors.

This isn’t the first time that Snapchat has been hit with concerns about privacy. Back in May, it settled with the Federal Trade Commission after the agency charged Snapchat with deceiving users on the amount of personal data it collects and how it protects it. At one point, a high-profile breach tied to the Find Friends feature exposed the user names and phone numbers of 4.6 million users, the FTC said.

The agency also criticized Snapchat for the third-party apps that allow saving of photos and videos. As part of the settlement, Snapchat faces independent privacy monitoring for 20 years.

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