Snapchat Comes In Dead Last On EFF's Privacy Protecting List; Just Days After Getting Spanked By FTC
from the what-privacy dept
Snapchat is often pitched as a more “private” alternative to other messaging apps, considering that a key part of its pitch is that the messages/images you send to others quickly disappear. For years, people have pointed out that Snapchat was overstating the reality when making those claims, and last week the FTC spanked the company for misleading its users about the privacy and security of their messages. And, this week, the “privacy” claims of Snapchat get another black eye as the EFF’s latest Who Has Your Back? chart has come out, detailing how various services deal with protecting your privacy from the US government. Want to know who came in dead last? Snapchat:
Want to know just how bad Snapchat is? Even AT&T and Comcast score better. Snapchat was the only company with one star. Amazon and AT&T only got two. Comcast (along with Foursquare and Myspace) had three. At the top of the list, Apple, CREDO Mobile, Dropbox, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Sonic.net, Twitter and Yahoo all got five stars. Some might question some of this, given stories of things like Microsoft changing Skype to grant greater government access, but on the specific categories that EFF judges for the ratings, they appear to be accurate.
Of course, to be fair, one of the categories is whether or not the company “fights for users’ privacy rights in courts.” That’s an important measure, but it’s also a conditional one. All of the other categories can be done by any company of their own volition, but you can’t fight in court if there are no opportunities to go to court to protect your users’ privacy. Either way, it’s good to see that the EFF chart is having an impact in getting companies to be more aggressive in protecting the privacy of their users from the government. But, really, shame on Snapchat for positioning itself as a privacy option when it appears to do very little to actually protect people’s privacy.