Not everyone is familiar with Snapchat. For those who aren’t, it’s basically a social media site for users of Android and various Apple® (iPad, iPhone, iPod) products that allows its users to share pictures that disintegrate within seconds of viewing, based on an author’s preferences. Not only does it disintegrate from the receiver’s Snapchat account, but it’s supposed to disappear from the Snapchat’s server as well. Like other social media, one must create an account name and password. Also an email address, birth date, and cell number are requested in order to set up an account.
Earlier this week Snapchat users’ information was compromised. This security breach affected over 4.5 million users, whose account names and cell phone numbers were obtained by a group called the Syrian Electronic Army. Generally, the only way to send friend requests on Snapchat is by looking a person up by his/her user name and/or cell phone number. Now that this group has this information, members may attempt to send out invites to these users to gather even more information or worse yet mine for passwords to cause even more damage.
If you suspect that you might be one of these affected users, you can verify here. For information on changing your account name and/or deleting your account, visit this site. Unfortunately, changing your cell number will not ensure that this problem won’t happen again, but it is an option if you’d like to call your cell phone provider.
Definitely, this isn’t the first time a security breach has taken place on social media affecting millions of users nor will it be the last. The best way to combat these is to be aware that they are out there and to be proactive about changing passwords, every so often. Stay tuned to our blog, as we report on other security breaches and scams that may come about and provide ways of informing and protecting you and ones you interact with on a continual basis.