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23 Jun 2017

Snapchat launches new location sharing feature ‘Snap Map’

Snapchat’s new location sharing feature ‘Snap Map’ enables users to share their location in real time.

Releasing the global app feature earlier this week, Snapchat wrote on its blog

“‘We've built a whole new way to explore the world! See what's happening, find your friends, and get inspired to go on an adventure!"

But this has caused concern for privacy, with users worried about who will be able see to their exact location.

The new feature enables users to share their current location in real time, meaning they can pinpoint any of their contacts exact location at any given point.

The map displays users as cartoon avatars also known as ‘BitMoji’s’ and gives them ability to share location based images, videos and even message one another directly.

How to use Snap Map safely

Snap Map can be accessed through the camera screen by using two fingers to zoom out, this will display the map in which users can then see their friends locations.

Before using the feature, it’s important to think about who you want to see your location. Users can select from three different settings when deciding how they want to share their location, these are; Ghost Mode, My Friends and Select Friends. Each setting has a different level of privacy and control associated with it.

Ghost Mode gives you full control and allows any users who wish to hide their location from others to do so, with only the user able to see their own location on the map. Users can however still see the location of their friends.

My Friends means that all of the user’s contacts will be able to see their location. It’s important to remember to review your contact list before choosing this setting, to avoid sharing your location with people you don’t know.

Select Friends allows users to carefully select individuals from their contact list who they wish to share their location with. These settings can be applied by clicking on the settings icon > Choose the option ‘see my location’ > Choose the option you would like to apply.

Smoothwall’s tips

  • Sharing your location with people you don’t know can be very risky as it can give strangers the opportunity to build a picture of the things you may like to do, the places you like to visit, and can even reveal where you live. Remember to only share your location with people you know and trust.
  • Never speak to or agree to meet people you don’t know. If a stranger tries to contact you, adjust your location settings and speak to an adult. 
  • Remember you can change your location settings at any given time, so make sure you review your settings regularly and choose the right decision for you.

  To learn more about Snap Map including how it works and how to report inappropriate behaviour, click here.

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