Clubhouse allows users to interact in public or private chat rooms with the promise that the spoken material will vanish after the session ends and will not be registered. However, to everyone’s surprise, US cybersecurity researchers have discovered a way for a user to leak the audio stream from multiple chat rooms. The hacker was able to access users’ audio chats and stream them on third-party websites, according to a Bloomberg study, alarming officials. The audio that was leaked came from a variety of different rooms on the app. Clubhouse told Bloomberg that the user has been suspended and that new measures have been placed in place to prevent messages from being leaked again.
The clubhouse has also been revealed to have links to China. Agora Inc, a Shanghai-based startup, manages the bulk of the app’s backend. This reliance raises concerns about the app’s security, as there is a risk that users’ data will be shared with the Chinese government. Despite the app’s exponential growth in terms of downloads and influencer mentions, the possibility of people’s data being misused is frightening. Given the app’s exponential growth in terms of downloads and influencer mentions, the possibility of people’s data being exchanged by circumventing the app’s protection is frightening.
“I feel like there’s a lot of users who got excited because it’s a new thing and because you need an invitation, the conversations must be private,” says Australian cybersecurity researcher Robert Potter, who developed the Washington Post’s cybersecurity operation center. It happened with Zoom and Tiktok – we see an app with a lot of development, it goes viral, and then it dies.
It happened with Zoom and Tiktok – we see an app with a lot of development, it goes viral, and then they have a privacy issue, or they discover a lot of problems that weren’t so big when they were smaller, and cyber-security is added later. People need to recognize that the privacy and protection of younger social media sites will not be as strong as mature platforms. People simply need to recognize that the privacy and protection of younger social media sites will not be as strong as those of more developed platforms.”