Concerns over Snapchat’s new Snap Map
23 June 2017
Snapchat’s latest update introduces the new Snap Map feature, which allows people to view publicly posted images on a searchable map.
Understandably, parents and guardians are concerned over the safety of this new feature; with one describing it as “dangerous” and another saying she was struggling to find the way to disable it.
By using Snap Map people will be able to search for places such as schools and see videos and pictures posted by children inside.
Pinpointing your location
Snapchat have described the feature as “a new way to explore the world”; with photos and videos that have been posted publicly being placed on the map and if they opt to share their location, they will be visible to all their ‘friends’.
As many people are aware, ‘friends’ on social media channels can actually be strangers as well as people they do know. By using the map, someone’s location can be pinpointed to as specific as whereabouts you are within in a building.
Snap, the owner of Snapchat, stressed to the BBC that location sharing is an ‘opt-in’ feature only and will not be automatically turned on once updated. They justified the use of exact location by saying it was necessary to allow friends to use the service to meet, for example at a crowded festival.
Points of interest on the map, for example schools, were provided by third-party mapping service Mapbox.
How do you turn off Snap Map location sharing?
NOTE: Photos and videos posted to Snapchat’s public ‘Our Story’ will still be discoverable on the map
Concerned about how to ensure yours or your child’s safety online? Take a look at the NSPCC’s advice here – www.nspcc.org.uk/preventing-abuse/keeping-children-safe/online-safety/talking-your-child-staying-safe-online.