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How Dangerous Is Snapchat’s Newest Feature?

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Snapchat has quickly become of the most used social media platforms out there, but their newest function could be giving people more information than you want.

Snapchat is one of the hottest social media apps out there right now, with 166 million daily active users. Users love the quick looks into people’s lives as well as the filters that give you flowered crowns and the ability to look like cute little animals. Their newest update has some raised some red flags for users, parents and security experts alike.

“Snap map” allows users to see the location of their friends and their Bitmojis for anyone on a friend’s list to see. This means that every single time you open your snapchat app, your location is updated to show exactly where you are.

Like, exactly.

To prove this point, I looked at the last location of my coworker last night. When I zoomed in on her Bitmoji’s location, I was able to identify where she lived, almost down to the exact house. I made it within three houses.  From there, I tracked her movements the rest of weekend and was able to guess where she was and what she was doing. If your Snap map is on, people can see where you are, what you’re doing and could know where you live and work. People can also find out where you like to spend your time and your habits. This can make you more susceptible to criminals and stalkers.

To protect yourself and opt-out of using Snap map, user can choose to use the “ghost mode” feature on Snap map. When Snapchat initially asks you to use Snap Map, make sure to pick the first option which is ghost mode. You can also switch to ghost mode through the app’s settings. This will disable the geolocation feature on Snapchat. But don’t worry, you can still creepily check out the Snap map to see what your friends are doing.

Just because you don’t want people spying on you, doesn’t mean you can’t spy on them.

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