The US Constitution doesn’t say anything about an implicit “right to privacy” although the Supremes have been quite vocal since the 70′s trying to figure it out for us. As we begin to rely on our mobile devices for more and more of our everyday living, both privacy and security become more and more important. How much of your financial data is easily accessible to anyone that can hack your 4-digit unlock code? With the ubiquity of social networking, what you disclose to others is also becoming hard to control. It’s hard now not to disclose what you’re doing, photos of where you’ve been and chats with your friends. All of that info is now in the cloud, just one Anonymous hack away. Your digital past is also your digital future.
To your rescue is a series of apps and services that promise to keep everything you do under wraps — if you want. Some services like Snapchat promise to eviscerate your status updates the moment they’re viewed. If only Anthony Weiner had this app before he tweeted away his political future! With Snapchat you can take photos or short videos and then decide how long your friends can view them. After 10 seconds or less, they disappear forever (at least we think they do). Snapchat has exploded over the last year with 100 million photos and videos exchanged every day. Facebook even jumped on the bandwagon for a bit with their own app, Poke, which failed to take off.
Other apps like Gryphn, Wickr and Burn Note also promise to give you more control over what you share and for how long. They all promise deeper levels of security and privacy. Temporary social media allows users to be more spontaneous and authentic. Think of it as the hallway conversations you have with your friends, or the “in-passing” remarks you make to your neighbors… dialoge that’s important, but doesn’t need to be part of your digital record for all eternity. Now, you can potentially breathe a little easier knowing there’s a way to control some of what you’re broadcasting. Or, you could just log off, I guess.