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Subscriber active since. A giant database of intercepted Snapchat photos and videos has been released by hackers who have been collecting the files for years. Shocked users of the notorious chat forum 4chan are referring to the hack as "The Snappening," noting that this is far bigger than the iCloud hacks that recently targeted celebrities.
Underground photo-trading chat rooms have been filled in recent weeks with hints that something big was coming.
Thursday night it finally arrived: A third-party Snapchat client app has been collecting every single photo and video file sent through it for years, giving hackers access to a 13GB library of Snapchats that users thought had been deleted. Users of 4chan have downloaded the files and are creating a searchable database that will allow people to search the stolen images by Snapchat username. The database of Snapchat files posted online was hosted on viralpop. That site has now been suspended and taken offline, although thousands of people have already downloaded the collection of Snapchats.
This is what the collection of intercepted Snapchat photos and videos looked like:. One news report suggests the hacked third-party Snapchat client was Snapsave.
The popular Android app allowed users to keep Snapchat photos and videos, which automatically delete when viewed through the official Snapchat app. This means that the hacked Snapchat client was probably a website, rather than an app. An anonymous photo trader contacted Business Insider to tell us that the site affected was SnapSaved.
The service acted as a web client for the Snapchat app that allowed users to receive photos and videos, and save them online. What its users didn't realize was that the site was quietly collecting everything that passed through it, storing incriminating Snapchats on a web server, with the usernames of senders attached. We don't know if the third-party Snapchat client, whether Snapsave or SnapSaved, was created with the purpose of intercepting images.
It may have been the case that hackers accessed the servers of one of the sites, which had inadvertently stored the files, and rehosted the directory online. In a statement to Business Insider, Snapchat confirmed the images came from third-party sites, while denying that Snapchat's servers were breached by hackers:.
We vigilantly monitor the App Store and Google Play for illegal third-party apps and have succeeded in getting many of these removed. Half of Snapchat's users are teenagers between the ages of 13 and Snapchat has a poor history when it comes to the security of users' data. Insecurity researchers revealed that it was possible to find the phone of any Snapchat user through the app. The company was forced to apologize after 4.
In Februaryhackers used Snapchat to send photos of fruit smoothies to thousands of people.
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