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Is Clubhouse safe?

As the new voice-only social media platform’s user base grows rapidly, concerns about Clubhouse’s privacy practices are raised.

The Clubhouse application has recently become popular in various parts of the world. It appears to be a reflection of the growing interest in sound-based products with the recent rebound of podcasts.

The Clubhouse has everything for users to find and interact with each other which is the basic dynamic of a social network. However, that creates a false sense of security, privacy, and closeness, in part because of how its registration works (it’s invitation-only at the moment). This creates several risks for the users, which are important to be aware of when using any public space on the internet.

One of the risks is privacy risks. This is often connected with the fact that users feel they are surrounded by like-minded individuals and friends, which allows them to behave more authentically than they would in front of strangers. This creates an opportunity for offenders who are always on the lookout to use any accidentally mentioned information against the victim.

Additionally, in such a scenario a user wouldn’t be able to prove a phrase was, for example, taken out of context, unless the conversation is recorded in advance. Theoretically, such cases could lead to blackmailing a targeted person by demanding they pay a ransom.

Moreover, it’s important to remember that everything spoken or written within the app is not only heard and seen by those present but also collected and analysed by the service itself.

The app collects content, communications, and other information that participants provide, including when you sign up for an account, create or share content, and message or communicate with others. To create and manage an account, a participant may provide personal data, including name, phone number, a photo, an email address, and a username.

The app temporarily records the audio in a room while the room is live. Additionally, the data collected about the participants may also be given to third-parties, albeit for temporary use, but no one is insured against leaks.

Alexey Firsh, security researcher at Kaspersky, says: “As a whole, Clubhouse’s Privacy Policy is relatively standard, but when you share something on such social networks, it’s very important to always remember that you actually can’t be 100% sure what will happen with your shared data, so you have to be prepared for the fact that one day it may leak to the general public — someone may simply record it.” 

Kaspersky experts warn that users must remember that the Internet, especially discussion and social platforms, are a public place and the behaviour conducted on them should be appropriate for the public.

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