News about Snapchat data abuse made waves on the Internet in 2019. An anonymous source reported that some employees had exploited internal monitoring tools to access private user information, such as location data, numbers, and Snaps.
Surprisingly, no new reports or statistics on how do Snapchat accounts get hacked have surfaced since then. However, this doesn’t mean the app is immune to malware and cyber threats. We will cover common methods that hackers use to attack your account and explain how you can protect your data.
Unfortunately, the answer is yes. Malicious actors employ 5 methods to hack Snapchat account:
- Brute Force Attacks
- Wi-Fi Sync
- Spy Apps
- Keylogger Attacks
If you use the same login information across multiple social media accounts or, worse, publish your phone number or email on open sources, hackers can attempt to guess your password to Snapchat. This process is called a “Brute force attack.” In simple terms, hacker tests a series of combinations until they find the right one.
Can someone hack my Snapchat easily by using a brute force attack? Not really, especially if your password is unique and consists of a random combination of numbers, symbols, and letters. You can use an offline word generator to brainstorm new, strong passwords (but do not copy then word-to-word, as that’s also risky).
For added security, it’s a good idea to check whether your login credentials have been leaked. Online tools like https://detectico.com/ can automatically scan your phone number or email to verify that your account is safe.
Sometimes, users give away their passwords without a second thought. Skillful hackers can create fake Snapchat login pages with built-in keylogging algorithms (we’ll discuss this technique later). Once you input your credentials, you’ve taken the bait because a third party immediately receives your information on the other end.
You might rightfully ask how users fall for such a simple trick. Well, phishing attacks are crafty. Typically, hackers send email messages with verification links that mimic legitimate Snapchat, saying, “We noticed suspicious activity on your account. Please change your password [link]”.
The same principle applies to message phishing. If you’ve been wondering, “Can someone hack your Snapchat by adding you to a friend list?” the answer lies in this technique. New friends can send you an invitation link to a private account that asks you to re-log into Snapchat. Overall, many numerous malicious schemes involve phishing in one way or another.
Your best defense against phishing attacks is vigilance. Avoid following links from untrusted sources, and contact Snapchat Support if you receive suspicious notifications.
Like all social media apps, Snapchat relies on continuous data exchange through mobile and Wi-Fi networks. Although your Snaps and messages typically take up only a few megabytes, you might find it much more convenient to share them via Wi-Fi. Therefore, it can be tempting to post a story or two via open networks when you are out and about.
However, malicious actors often use unprotected networks as channels to distribute malware to all connected devices. Depending on the software type, they can either steal your password to hack Snapchat account or install spyware that intercepts messages and files you share.
Naturally, it’s best to avoid public networks whenever possible, even if you have limited mobile data. You can also turn on the VPN service before connecting to any open Wi-Fi to reduce potential risks.
Among all the techniques someone might use to hack a Snapchat account, installing spy apps is the easiest. This type of software is available for download online, so anyone with a speedy Internet connection can access your private data on Snapchat.
But how do spy apps work? A user logs into a cloud-based database after installing a monitoring tool on your device. The spy app transfers your data to this cloud server in real time, meaning that hackers can view new messages and Snaps the moment you share them.
Unfortunately, you won’t notice any changes on your account because spy apps bypass security filters and run silently in the background. The only reliable solution is to install an antivirus app on your device before someone attempts to hack the Snapchat account.
To help you determine whether an antivirus scan detected a Snapchat spy tool, we’ve compiled a list of the most widely-used ones.
|What It Can See
|Hidden from You?
|iOS 7.0+ Android 4.0+
|-Private chats -Friend lists -Snaps & Stories -Comments -Live GPS location -Passwords
|iOS 7.0+ Android 4.0+
|-Sent and received messages -Contacts -Shared photos & videos -GPS locatios -Deleted chats -Deleted Snaps
|iOS 6.0+ Android 4.0+
|-Messages -Contacts -Screen recordings -Stories
|All iOS devices Android 4.0+
|-Personal chats -Shared multimedia files -Locations -Contacts
|iOS 6.0+ Android 4.0+
|-Text messages -Photos -Videos -Friend lists
The powerful capabilities of keylogger software made users ask, “Can someone hack your phone through Snapchat?” The question arises because keyloggers record all keystrokes made on an infected device. This reveals not only Snapchat passwords but also other confidential information like bank credentials and deleted conversations.
You can prevent keylogger attacks by using robust antivirus software, regularly updating your mobile operating system, and avoiding suspicious websites.
Snapchat’s user base has been expanding rapidly since 2019. Unfortunately, as usage trends evolve, hackers adapt and develop new techniques to target personal data shared on the platform. To answer your question, “How do Snapchat accounts get hacked?” we’ve conducted deep research and found that common methods include:
- Spy apps
- Wi-Fi spyware
- Keylogger attacks
- Brute force attacks
The key takeaway about cyberattacks on social media, not just Snapchat, remains the same: prevention is easier than repairing the damage. So, secure your Snapchat with a strong password, regular software updates, and real-time antivirus scans.