Snapchat has gone full ‘creeper’ mode, launching a new feature that lets other users see exactly where you are at any given moment on a map, in real-time, with shocking accuracy right down to the street you’re on.
You can also see where groups of your friends are hanging out, as the map shows them located close together.
There’s obviously big privacy concerns about this feature. Showing where you are in real-time on a map for the whole world to see can open yourself up to a lot of issues, and both parents and users are taking to Twitter to share their concerns.
A lot of Snapchat users are reacting to is the fact that you can easily catch your friends in a lie if they say they are somewhere they aren’t (no more “I’m staying home tonight” when the map shows them being somewhere else).
When you realise you can't tell your friends you're "five minutes away" because they can now see you on the new Snapchat update pic.twitter.com/d9mgnQxK9J
— b.b (@Benoo_Brown) June 22, 2017
If you're in a relationship and worried about the snapchat update you probably shouldn't be in one https://t.co/4a7ZLC4C64
— Shafeeq (@Y2SHAF) June 22, 2017
But there are more serious security and personal safety concerns to consider, including increased chances of home break-ins while you’re shown to be away, and the fact that most Snapchat users are young teenagers who could now be exposing their location to child predators.
Snapchat built its platform on the concept of disappearing messages that weren’t stored, which was a concept that shook up the social media industry and brought a privacy-first approach to the forefront. Facebook, in contrast, has typically been all about archiving your life – storing photos and memories, and making posts which stay up on your profile forever. Snapchat, on the other hand, was built to share in-the-moment stories.
Parents are urging their kids to go into “ghost mode” which removes you from showing on the map.
To do this, open Snapchat and do a pinch gesture on the screen which will launch Snap Maps. If it’s your first time in the map feature, you’ll be given the chance to enable “ghost mode”. Ghost mode can be enabled or disabled at any time by tapping on the gear icon in the top right corner of Snap Maps.
snap update boutta ruin lives pic.twitter.com/mvaMD7Mp7Y
— lui (@alexissullyy) June 22, 2017
the worst thing about snapchat maps is that people are now gonna realise I never leave my house
— bex (@beccyread) June 22, 2017
Snapchat now has a "maps" feature so not only do you know who's shagging who but now you know where and when
— Erin (@ehrym) June 21, 2017
No way has Snapchat included maps in the new update showing you where and who people are with as if we weren't paranoid enough already 😂
— Shafeeq (@Y2SHAF) June 21, 2017
I've must've already checked snapchat maps about 70 times this is the worst update snapchat has ever done I'm going crAzy
— Zach Lemmon (@xzachlemmonx) June 22, 2017
The new @Snapchat maps is a stupid, unsafe idea. You can actually see someones house/EXACTLY where they are on it. How creepy😥😥😥
— xoxo,millie (@adorexalaska) June 22, 2017
Snapchat maps telling you when they were last active on snapchat is gonna make soooooo many psycho girls even more psycho hahahahahaha
— Holly (@hollbrown_) June 22, 2017