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Fake Snapchat services hacked

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posted on Oct, 11 2014 @ 12:43 AM
"Explicit images believed to have been sent through messaging service Snapchat were reportedly put online, with threats from hackers to upload more."

BBC report

So the story is presented that Snapchat has been hacked and maybe 1000's of images, potentially of kids have been hacked.

Now I am no IT expert but when the full report is read it throws an entirely different story to light. There are some dreadfully ill informed quotes from experts who really should know better.

So Snapchats response is on the ball "Snapchat said its servers "were never breached". And that it was due to users accessing its service through THIRD PARTY apps that are expressly forbidden under Snapchats T&C. They also expressly state that they patrol the app stores and have any third party apps removed.

Now here come the so called experts great quotes:
"For them to just turn round and say, 'It's the users' fault,' does seem harsh,"
"They give the perception it is safe, they need to make it safe. They need to crack down on people's ability to access their data."
said Mark James, a security specialist from ESET.

So now this is where I ask you guys if my understanding of the technology is correct:

Normal Snap operation would be Phone->Snap server->Phone
Third party would be Pnone->Third party server->Snap server->Phone

This seems to be validated by this part of the report "It suspected that at least one such service was keeping a database of all the pictures and videos that had passed through it"

Now as these services selling point is to be able to access 'snaps' long after they should be it makes sense that the third party would keep the 'snaps' on its own server (so that users phone memory isnt jammed with 'snaps')

Am I correct?

The final lines of the report in the form of quotes from 'consultant' Brian Honan
"Has Snapchat been breached? According to the letter of the law, no,"
"But people use Snapchat to keep their information secure and would expect the company to have systems and services in place to support that."

Well they clearly do have systems in place - banning users from using third party apps and closing down those apps on the stores.

I imagine going after the actual third party servers would be a massive cost implication and not really the responsibility of Snapchat to protect its users from doing something it forbids?

The tone of the report overall seems to imply that this is all Snapchats fault. However a change of headline and some content would change this from a negative story about Snapchat into a positive one.

New headline: "Fake Snapchat services xxxxx & yyyyyy hacked"
Content: Delete Mark James quotes as horribly ill informed and get rid of the second consultants quote. Rework into making it clearer that xxxx and yyyyy are the companies involved. (As they are never actually named)

I thank you

posted on Oct, 11 2014 @ 06:13 AM
a reply to: UltraMind

Off topic!

I wish I cared about this affair....
Here we have a perfect example of how the making of physical gadgets rob us of our humanity because we "have to" spend much of our precious time, energy and capital "fixing" the gadgets that go haywire (break). Does anybody ever just sit and look at the Moon anymore, preferably holding the hand of another?

posted on Oct, 11 2014 @ 09:08 AM
I don't use it but, you are correct. The users or their friends put themselves at risk.

I wonder why you would want someone keeping pictures you wanted gone... the friend needs to be gone.

The only thing I can add is I think the third party app may not be the only breach. You can get moded snapchat.

posted on Oct, 11 2014 @ 10:44 AM
a reply to: UltraMind

The leak is yet another troubling security and privacy incident for Snapchat, said security consultant Brian Honan.

At the start of this year, 4.6m usernames and phone numbers were leaked online. More recently, the service has been suffering from spam messages being sent out from users' accounts without their knowledge.

This is not the first time this year Snapchat has had problems with security breaches. This time they just happen to be able to point the finger elsewhere.

They may not be legally at fault, but the fact that their app is primarily used by minors who think it's a "safe" way to sext without keeping evidence behind on their phone means that they are responsible for ensuring there's no possible way to mod or circumvent the app with third-party apps.

posted on Oct, 11 2014 @ 11:06 AM
Maybe now people will finally learn not to send nekkid pics?

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