HOUSEPARTY is a popular video chat app that has gone viral during the coronavirus lockdown, but is now subject to rumours that it has been hacked, compromising personal information including passwords.
It is also unnecessarily frustrating for customers to ensure that all that information is deleted properly should they choose to delete their accounts. But here's how to do it.
Before you delete your account, please note that the company denies having been hacked, and says it is subject to "a paid commercial smear campaign", and that user data "is safe".
However, large numbers of users on Twitter are reporting that they've had Spotify, PayPal and bank accounts hacked after downloading the app.
More on the hack can be found here, and a Sun Tech review of the app and its safety can be found here.
How to properly delete your Houseparty account
Here's how to delete Houseparty safely and remove all your data:
Android and MacOS (and iPad and iPhone just for good measure)
Houseparty's Android and MacOS apps don't give you an option to quickly delete your account.
You will have to write an email to [email protected] specifically to request your account deletion.
You must send the message from the email address associated with your Houseparty account.
In the message, you have to be extremely clear about what you want:
- Start by heading it "Request to Delete Account".
- You should list your full name, username, phone number and regular email address.
- Write a direct request to terminate your account that specifies that you want the Houseparty account deleted effective immediately, that you want all your data erased from their servers, and that you want the app and account to no longer remain active.
You should get a confirmation email as soon as that's done. Please remember to check your junk and spam folders just in case it's been caught up there.
Here's a quick reminder of your rights under General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
Deleting your account on iPhone from your phone (gets super creepy)
- Open the app
- Click on the smiley face or notifications on the top left, that takes you to the Friends section
- Tap the settings gear at the top left of the Friends screen.
- Tap Privacy
- Then Delete Account
- Ignore the really creepy confirmation message that tells you you can "NEVER get it back" and tap the big red Yes. Be strong.
- It then asks for your password and asks "Are you absolutely positive? Enter your password if you really want to delete it.", because this app now seems to think it's appropriate to behave like a clingy ex during a breakup.
- Then it doubles down with a somehow even more emotionally manipulative message that literally says: "Last chance to change your mind! You're breaking our hearts". Stay the course, it's a machine written by a corporation: It doesn't have a heart.
- Hit the red delete button and you're done and free.
How to delete the app on your phone
Once your account and data are deleted, delete the app as you would any other – make them shake with fear on an iphone/ipad and delete them through "settings -> apps" on Android devices.
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