In this blogpost, Bhavneet Vohra, a student of Vivekananda Institute of Professional Studies, Delhi, gives a comparative analysis of the privacy policies of Snapchat and Instagram.



Before we move on to the distinction and similarities between the privacy policies of both the most popular and fastest growing mobile application, we also need to understand about some basics of these two applications.


An Overview of Snapchat


Evan SpiegelBobby Murphy, and Reggie Brown in September 2011 created an image messaging and multimedia mobile application. The Headquarters of the respective company are located in Venice, California. There were 3 major features that were offered by the application in the initial stage of development, which got updated and modified as per the changing needs, demands and feedback from the users. The three major features are as follows:

  1. Core functionality
  2. Messaging
  3. Stories and Discover


An Overview of Instagram


Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger launched Instagram in the year 2011 as a free mobile application. Not so similar to Snapchat, Instagram is also an mobile photo and video sharing and social networking service that allows all its users across the world to take pictures and videos, that can be shared both publically and privately on the app and moreover on various other platforms such as  FacebookTwitterTumblr, and Flickr. There are certain unique features and tools that are offered by the application for its users and which have been updated and modified keeping in view that accessibility and need of all its users across the world which can be listed as follows:

  1. Explore Tab
  2. Filters
  3. Lux- This particular feature allows you to adjust the exposure and contrast through a 100- pointer slider quickly. Apart from this, the brightness and saturation level can also be controlled by using this feature of
  4. Video
  5. Instagram Direct

 Information Technology (Reasonable Security Practices and Procedures and Sensitive Personal Data or Information) Rules, 2011 defines the legal provisions regarding the information and its collection, transfer, usage, and disclosure, etc.

  1. A collection of information. (Section 5)
  2. Sensitive personal data or information (Section 3 of the rules)
  3. Personal Information – Section 2(i)

means any information that relates to a natural person, which, either directly or indirectly, in combination with other information available or likely to be available with a body corporate, is capable of identifying such person.”

Now, since above we have duly covered the main features and tools of these most popular and trending apps of the era, we can now move to the legal provisions related to the same, which is the Privacy policies of both the Applications which are as follows:


Information collected by them 1.      Usage Information

2.      Content Information- Content that is provided by the users of the app.

3.      Device Information- hardware model, operating system version, advertising identifier, unique application identifiers, unique device identifiers, browser type, language, wireless network, and mobile network information (including the mobile phone number).

4.      Device Phonebook

5.      Camera and Photos

6.      Location Information

7.      Log Information


1.      Information provided by us directly- like our username, email id, phone number, user content (photos, comments, etc. that we post), communication between the application and the user.

2.      Analytics Information- These tools collect information sent by your device or our Service, including the web pages you visit, add-ons, and other information that assists us in improving the Service.

3.      Log files information- The information automatically reported by your browser each time you make a request to access a web page or app.

4.      Device identifiers

5.      Metadata- The data that is technical in nature and is associated with the user content.


Information used by them
  • Develop, operate, improve, deliver, maintain, and protect our products and services
  • For the purpose of communication with the user
  • For monitoring and analyzing trends in usage
  • For the enhancement of safety and security procedures
  • Verification of identity and prevention of fraud.
  • For enforcement of terms of services and other usage policies.


  • To enable us to provide efficient access to information
  • For the provision of personalized content and information
  • Development and testing of new updated products, features and tools.
  • For diagnosing and fixing technical problems
  • To enable to automatically update the application from time to time as per the needs of the user and with changing trends and technology.


Sharing of the Information
  • With other Snapchatters
  • With all Snapchatters and the general public
  • With their affiliates- It refers to the entities within the Snapchat family
  • With Third Parties
  • With Service Providers, Sellers, and Partners
  • With Third parties for legal reasons
Instagram also generally shares its information that is provided by us and the user content with almost the same parties as of the Snapchat.
Children’s Privacy The services of Snapchat are not intended to be used by the children below the age of 13 As per the Privacy Policy of Instagram, services are not intended to be used by the children below the age of 13.




From the above article, we can relate to the privacy policy and can make a clear comparison between the two. We need to understand that these policies are made keeping in mind all the users across the world and not according to any pertaining law of any particular country. The Information Technology Acts and Rules differ from each other, in India, this trend is a little new, and there are many modifications and updates that need to be made as the law is ancient in this respect. These policies also differ for iOS and Android users.


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