3 Nov 2015

Snapchat denies storing private photos

2:21 pm on 3 November 2015

Snapchat has clarified the terms of its latest policy update, assuring users that it still does not store the private photos or messages sent via its application.

Snapchat,privacy, Snapchat

Snapchat offers users the ability to send messages without those messages being saved on the company's servers. Photo: RNZ / Alexander Robertson

The popular social media service updated both its privacy policy and terms of service late last month.

Since then, it has been the subject of a barrage of media reports claiming that it now reserves the right to store all content shared by its users, even after it famously "self-destructs".

The updated line in question states that Snapchat has the right to "store" and "use" any shared content.

"You grant Snapchat a worldwide, perpetual, royalty-free, sublicensable, and transferable license to host, store, use, display, reproduce, modify, adapt, edit, publish, create derivative works from, publicly perform, broadcast, distribute, syndicate, promote, exhibit, and publicly display that content in any form," the full term reads.

But in a blog post published yesterday, Snapchat stressed to its users that it continues to delete snaps from its servers as soon as they are received.

"The snaps and chats you send your friends remain as private as they were before the update," it said.

"Our Privacy Policy continues to say - as it did before - that those messages are automatically deleted from our servers once we detect that they have been viewed or have expired.

"Snapchat is not - and has never been - stockpiling your private snaps and chats."

Snapchat's privacy policy and terms of service have been meticulously monitored in the past, with the application's "self-destructing" capabilities commonly exploited to share sensitive images.