Larry Magid: Snapchat’s Bonus Feature Raises Concern

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(Indranil Mukherjee/Getty Images)

(Indranil Mukherjee/Getty Images)

LarryMagid01-228 Larry Magid
Larry Magid is a technology journalist and an Internet safe...
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SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) — Photo and video-sharing app Snapchat has a bonus feature that kids might love but parents might fear. The app automatically deletes the message seconds after it’s viewed.

Teens and young adults may think it’s really cool because they can send all sorts of risqué stuff or even stuff about somebody else and think that they don’t have to worry about privacy. But the reality is those activities can be captured.

Anything digital can be captured, copied or pasted, but the way this is designed is with almost a self-destruct mechanism. The viewer has 10 seconds once they access the content before it gets deleted. You can actually set it for as little as 10 seconds.

Anyone that believes that you have a complete sense of privacy with these sorts of technologies is really fooling themselves. Obviously the elephant in the room here is sexting. That’s something that is seeping its way into our culture. We’ve seen it trending amongst teens and we’ve even had instances of politicians getting caught doing this. But what else could this app be used for?

Basically anything you want to share with a friend, but don’t want a permanent record of. I can think of a lot of things that fit that category where you still have your clothes on.

(Copyright 2013 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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