Popular app adds money-sending feature

BY Laura baier

baierla@mnstate.edu

Food, new purchases at the mall and silly faces you would only want your top friends to see are some of the pictures sent back and forth through one of the most popular apps featured on your smartphone called Snapchat.

Released Nov. 17, Snapcash is the newest feature on Snapchat, allowing its users to send money to people in their contacts. It gives users the option to link their Snapchat account to their bank account in order to send and receive money.

Snapcash is working with a company called Square, which allows you to send money through a mobile phone or email, to make such a feature possible.

In order to send cash to a friend the user will enter the dollar sign along with an amount of money in a private message. Snapchat will recognize the dollar amount and a green payment button will appear, the user will then tap that button which will then send their payment.

The person receiving the money has 24 hours to accept it or it will disappear and the money will be transferred back into the sender’s bank account.

With this new release, there are also concerns of security and how easy it might be to hack into someone’s bank account.    “We set out to make payments faster and more fun, but we also know that security is essential when you’re dealing with money,” read Snapchat’s blog article about the new feature. “Square has a ton of experience in this area and our teams have been hard at work to make Snapcash a great experience for everyone.” Snapcash also puts a limit to how much money you can send: $250  is allowed per week to first-time users, which gradually moves up to $1000 per week. These restrictions can be changed with the confirmation of identity through Square.

Though Snapchat has stated that it is a secure feature,  people are still questioning it.

“Chances of me linking my debit card to use Snapcash? Zero,” tweeted David Lorr, entrepreneur.

Zach Williamson, creator of Wordstigram seemed to agree when he tweeted, “Snapcash sounds like a great way to get my bank account info stolen.”

Still a relatively new feature, not many people have posted reviews after using the app. Students themselves are still trying to figure out how they feel about it.

“Snapcash seems like an unnecessary addition to the app,” said senior Shelly Sommers. “If I were needing to transfer money to someone, I wouldn’t think of Snapchat as my first outlet to do that.”

People have expressed their concerns about encouraging users to pay for nude photos through the app.

“It doesn’t seem like a secure way to handle transactions and the whole system reeks of trafficking of pornographic photos,” sophomore Kyle Sperle said. “People might start sending money in exchange for nudes through the app which makes it an awful idea.”

Snapchat isn’t just about sending photos of your day and videos capturing your funniest moments anymore, but instead an advanced app that can do much more.

Snapcash is only available to those over the age of 18 and living in the United States.

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