Disappearing Messages


Type of Resource


Publication Date

June 22, 2023


Social Media and Apps 

What are Disappearing Messages?

Disappearing messages are text, video, or audio messages that disappear either after they have been viewed or after a defined time frame.

Messaging services such as Snapchat, Messenger, and WhatsApp have adapted their functionality to include disappearing messages.

It is important to remember that the recipient of a disappearing message is still able to take a screenshot or download a third-party app which captures the image, without the sender’s knowledge. The best way to ensure this doesn’t happen is not to send anything you wouldn’t want to be shared.

Secret Messages

Secret messages rely on encryption.

Some services provide encryption to add an extra layer of security to messages, such as Facebook Messenger secret conversations. Developed initially to provide a secure way of transferring confidential data such as bank information, encryption has been manipulated by users as a way to send inappropriate messages, pictures, and videos secretly.

Talking to Young People About Anonymous and Disappearing Messaging

Key Risks include:

Welcome to the Online Safety Hub

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