Those private ephemeral ads for losing pounds and enhancing penis size you see above appeared in my Snapchat feed yesterday, along with a handful of new "friends" in my contacts. I'm not the only one being inundated by spam.
My privacy settings allow anyone to contact me (no dick pics, please), but I'm not sure if users with stricter settings have also been affected. I've reached out to Snapchat to see if the spam is related to the company's callous approach to a security breach that forced them to hire a lobbyist for fear of dealing with lawsuits and FTC investigations. So far, there's no mention of the spam outbreak on the Snapchat blog where the company recently addressed a leak that exposed 4.6 million Snapchat accounts.
If you get better spam that the lame-o budget crap above, please feel free to post in the comments.
Update: Just after we posted, Snapchat put up a blog post apologizing if spam had interrupted your regularly scheduled sexting activities. The company emphasized that "While we expect to minimize spam, it is the consequence of a quickly growing service"—linking to a previous post about Snapchat spam from April in order to imply that this is unrelated to the leak:
Snap Spam Update
We've heard some complaints over the weekend about an increase in Snap Spam on our service. We want to apologize for any unwanted Snaps and let you know our team is working on resolving the issue. As far as we know, this is unrelated to the Find Friends issue we experienced over the holidays.
While we expect to minimize spam, it is the consequence of a quickly growing service. To help prevent spam from entering your feed, you can adjust your settings to determine who can send you Snaps. We recommend "Only My Friends" :)
We appreciate your patience and we'll keep you posted.
Update II: A Snapchat user named Shawn Farner reported that a friend who recently installed Snapchat found that his new account was sending spam to his friends. I've reached out to Snapchat to see if the current spam outbreak is being sent from legitimate accounts that got hacked or from accounts started for the express purpose of spamming:
————— Forwarded message —————
From: Shawn Farner
Date: Mon, Jan 13, 2014 at 12:27 PM
Subject: Snapchat Spam
So yeah, one of my good friends installed the app a few days ago. I then got five snaps from 1/10 through 1/12, all of them the same image promoting some kind of diet/weight loss product/website. I thought he was just messing with me, but I guess some other people got them also and told him he'd been hacked. He's not sure how it happened. That's the whole story.-shawn
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