Snapchat security – important message from Thinkyouknow

snapchatThere has been a lot of press coverage reporting the upload of a large number of stolen Snapchat photos to the internet.

These images have apparently been taken from a third party site ‘Snapsaved’ which appears to have been hacked. ‘Snapsaved’ enables users to save Snapchat pictures rather than see them disappear but in doing so saves the images on its own servers. Press reports state that it is images from this database which have been uploaded and made available via the 4Chan discussion boards. This story from The Independent provides background.

From the press reports it would appear that:

  • It is unlikely the images are linked to usernames so it would be hard to locate a photo of an individual
  • There is no additional personal information associated with images
  • Most of the images are not sexual

Despite this, young people you work with may be concerned that images of them have been uploaded. It’s really important that they are provided with support and know what to do if they lose control of a sexual image. It’s never too late to get help.

Young people can:

  • Talk to a counsellor at ChildLine on 0800 1111 or at www.childline.org.uk. ChildLine will also work with the Internet Watch Foundation to notify sites hosting images to have them removed.
  • If young people are being harassed, threatened or blackmailed because of a sexual image they can report to us at CEOP via the CEOP report form at www.ceop.police.uk/safety-centre.
  • If images end up on a site they can often report to the sites where they have been shared. Find out how to report to some popular sites here.

An education response

If you’d like to explore this issue with young people you work with, use the ‘News’ section of Thinkuknow – we’ve posted an article about it here.

Young people should be made aware of the potential consequences of sharing sexual images. They can visit Thinkuknow for 11-13s or Thinkuknow for 14+ for advice and films on the topic.

If you’re concerned about young people being blackmailed over images they have shared you can also access the ‘Webcam with Confidence’ fact sheet and assembly which tackles this issue from the Thinkuknow for Teachers Resources Area.

The CEOP Education Team