The Whisper app is supposed to be "the safest place on the Internet" for users to share secrets they wouldn't feel comfortable sharing anywhere else. And, a lot of people are taking advantage. Whisper users are sharing up to 2.6 million secrets a day. But, those secrets might not be so safe after all. It turns out Whisper is tracking user locations and sharing other user data with the government.
Whisper encourages people to share secrets on its social media platform and ensures them that they'll be kept anonymous. That's why you should make sure your kids aren't using it. People on the app talk about everything from cheating on their spouse to the cleanliness of hotel rooms where they work.
The Guardian is reporting that Whisper developers created their own program to keep track of some users. Reporters from the publication witnessed Whisper's abilities first hand when they visited the company's headquarters in September.
Whisper has developed an in-house mapping tool that allows its staff to filter and search GPS data, pinpointing messages to within 500 meters of where they were sent.
Whisper can even keep track of users who have specifically turned off Whisper's tracking ability on their gadgets.
When users have turned off their geolocation services, the company also, on a targeted, case-by-case basis, extracts their rough location from IP data emitted by their smartphone.
That's very concerning for people who think they're sharing secrets on the app anonymously.