Utah Forensics Company Will Retrieve Expired Snapchat Photos for a Fee

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News Posted: Fri, May 10 2013 10:39 AM
Kids and teens live in a different landscape than the one anybody in their thirties or above grew up in. We didn't have to worry about cyberbullying or having our Facebook posts scrutinized by potential employers, and we sure as hell weren't sending and receiving digital photos of our nude selves to other people. Polaroids, maybe, but even then, it was cost prohibitive to rapid-fire erotic shots to the flavor of the week. And today?

There's Snapchat, a real-time picture chatting application for iOS and Android devices. To be fair, not everyone is using Snapchat to take compromising photos of themselves, and the developers will tell you the ones that do are in the minority. Sure. If you're among them, be aware that your expired photos can be resurrected with the right tools. There's even a digital forensics company in Utah that will happily retrieve Snapchat photos for anywhere from $300 to $500, depending on the device.


The company is called Decipher Forensics, and through a little bit of research, it discovered that Snapchat photos aren't fully deleted. They can be retrieved and even tied to the sender and when they were sent. Decipher Forensics charges a hefty sum for its service, but points out that it requires special forensics software that the average person doesn't possess.

"This type of information can be very valuable in any investigation, especially one involving exploitation of a minor," said Richard Hickman, a lead examiner involved in the research. "This research will help law enforcement officials retrieve what has been believed to be unrecoverable."

That's well and good, but what about a scorned ex-lover who's willing to pony up a few hundred bucks for revenge? The lesson here is to be cautious of what you send through cyberspace.
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sevags replied on Fri, May 10 2013 8:04 PM

I don't get it though I can see how government agencies could get a hold of this info but as a "scorned lover" how can I convince this company that the information belongs to me? What relation do the device would I have to prove? I'm sure I can't just call up and ask for pictures to be recovered from people who never even sent me the pictures or from people I've never even met. I'm sure I can't pay them to recover info that isn't or was never mine.

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This is a little disturbing... I wonder what kind of legal battles this will lead to.

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