Why show off your private photos when you can let your Facebook friends stare at cat pictures instead?

Liang Hwei  |  Singapore
Published 2015-01-28 13:30:18

Everyone loves a good cat photo. But something tells me that there may be an exodus of cat photos coming to your Facebook news feed pretty soon.

This is because of Wickr’s newest feature for iOS users. The self-destructing messaging app has released ‘Wickr Timed Feed’, which allows you to share photos with up to 151 friends on the app for 24 hours. Not only that, it also links those photos onto your Facebook using cat pictures as a cover.

If you haven’t heard of Wickr before, it is a self-destructing messaging app that prides itself as the first real secure messaging app. All users’ personal information that goes into the app is not stored in any server, and it uses heavy encryption to help users maintain ownership over everything shared.

Image Credit: Wickr
Image Credit: Wickr

The way the app works is very similar to the way any messaging app works, except you get to set a time limit on each of your messages or pictures from as little as 3 seconds to as long as 6 days.

Image Credit: Wickr
Image Credit: Wickr

Wickr Timed Feed on the other hand (or WTF for short), definitely ups its game with the use of stenography — hiding secret messages in plain sight. By tapping on the WTF tab, you will be able to share your secret photos with a few select friends and post them onto Facebook. It will then appear on your Facebook News Feed in the form of a random cat photo with a message of your choice.

Your friends can then click on the picture, and be redirected to the image, which is also doomed to self-destruct within a stipulated time.

But why would a company so focused on the security of your messages even dabble with Facebook? Wickr founder and CEO Nico Sell told Engadget that their goal extends beyond simply self-destructing private messages.

“Our main mission is to create the private web,” Sell had said. “I think Facebook has done a good job of creating the public web, but that’s only one half of it.”

Is a private web really possible? Possibly, and there is definitely a market for it. Perhaps we will eventually be able to maintain social lives online without truly risking any personal information — and with the lure of cute cat photos, I’m not complaining.

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