Snapchat to release more secure app following breach

3 Jan 2014

Snapchat, the disappearing message service popular among teens, plans to release a more secure version of its app following a breach that enabled hackers to access the usernames and mobile numbers of 4.6m Snapchat users.

The updated app will allow users to opt out of Snapchat’s ‘Find Friends’ feature, which has apparently been at the centre of the breach.

“We will be releasing an updated version of the Snapchat application that will allow Snapchatters to opt out of appearing in Find Friends after they have verified their phone number. We’re also improving rate limiting and other restrictions to address future attempts to abuse our service,” Snapchat wrote in a blog post.

While Snapchat did not reveal when exactly the updated app would be released, it added that it wanted to ensure security experts can contact the company when they discover new ways to abuse the service “so that we can respond quickly to address those concerns.

“The best way to let us know about security vulnerabilities is by emailing us:”

The database of users’ details was published on SnapchatDB. However, the hackers withheld the last two digits of each mobile number. The site has since been suspended.

Tina Costanza was a journalist and sub-editor at Silicon Republic