Does the delete option in the social networking website serves its purpose? Well, Twitter answers no.
According to security researcher Karan Saini, Twitter has been saving direct messages (DMs) for years now. It appeared as though Twitter allowed the users to delete messages from their own side of the conversation, but it turns out they were saving these in their server. He found these messages to be years-old from an archive from those accounts that were no longer in use. These deleted messages could simply be accessed by downloading the data from archive even from those accounts that have been deactivated and suspended.
The fact that the company isn’t deleting these messages after giving us an impression as it did, throws the company’s reputation into a bad light. However, the company didn’t refuse the claim put forth by the security researcher. They are at least aware of the problem and have acknowledged the issue. There is no guarantee that an actual end card can be put to this problem.
There are no pieces of evidence for how long Twitter has been storing these deleted private messages. However, the security researcher reports “functional bug” that affects DMs from the accounts that have been deactivated. He says that these bug doesn’t expose the data to anyone but only to the sender and recipient of a message. Perhaps, this isn’t a major issue.
A Twitter representative said, “The company is looking into this further to ensure we have considered the entire scope of the issue.”
“There is no formality at all to how a user can ask for their data to be deleted. Any request from a user to delete their data that are directly communicated to the company “is a valid exercise” of a user’s rights”, says a telecom, tech and internet lawyer at the UK, Neil Brown. He also says, “A delete button is perhaps a different matter, as it is not obvious that ‘delete’ means the same as ‘exercise my right of erasure. Given that there’s no case law yet under the new General Data Protection Regulation regime, it will be up to the courts to decide”.
Twitter has been dealing with many bugs lately. There came the message spoofing issue that let anyone send tweets via mobile; then the bug that made protected tweets public for several users, and now, there’s this issue. Are bugs Twitter’s new favorite thing?