Snapchat introduces two-factor auth, but users 'won't care'

The majority of Snapchat users won't bother using two-factor authentication for the app, despite the company introducing the enhanced security measure last week.

This is according to security analyst Graham Cluley, who welcomed the move but warned that humans are "notoriously bad" at password management, and questioned whether the app's young users would care about the extra safeguard.

Snapchat uses a verification code delivered via SMS as a second security measure for customers logging in on new devices, and it can be activated from within a sub-menu in the settings' section of the app.

But Cluley wrote in a blog post: "The vast majority of Snapchat users will never turn on the feature. As if teens taking naked photos of their private parts care about privacy"

He added that Snapchat should make two-factor authentication a default security measure for all users.

"Adding the feature means that Snapchat can say that it provides a mechanism for protecting its users and shrug off any further responsibility," he said.

"If Snapchat really truly cared about its users, they would enforce the use of login verification on new accounts explaining how it's an important safety measure that can protect the privacy of accounts with the minimum of disruption."

Numerous nude pictures were leaked in an event known as the Snappening' last October, after the servers of a third-party Snapchat clone were breached, and while Cluley aired doubts over the success of the new measure, others believe it could lead to better security in apps.

Tony Pepper, CEO of security firm Egress Software, pointed to Facebook's recent announcement regarding encrypted messaging, saying as social apps employ better security, it will lead employees to demand better protection in the workplace.

He said: "They are set to demand the same level of security in the workplace. The tides are turning because the days of the IT department imposing security measures on staff are behind us.

"It's now the other way around, with increasingly informed employees banging on the door and demanding solutions they can understand, that have been designed with them in mind."

Adam Shepherd

Adam Shepherd has been a technology journalist since 2015, covering everything from cloud storage and security, to smartphones and servers. Over the course of his career, he’s seen the spread of 5G, the growing ubiquity of wireless devices, and the start of the connected revolution. He’s also been to more trade shows and technology conferences than he cares to count.

Adam is an avid follower of the latest hardware innovations, and he is never happier than when tinkering with complex network configurations, or exploring a new Linux distro. He was also previously a co-host on the ITPro Podcast, where he was often found ranting about his love of strange gadgets, his disdain for Windows Mobile, and everything in between.

You can find Adam tweeting about enterprise technology (or more often bad jokes) @AdamShepherUK.