Home / / Sarahah app subtly steals phone’s contacts: report

Sarahah app subtly steals phone’s contacts: report

The app, named after the Arabic word for “honesty,” was created in Saudi Arabia by Zain al-Abidin Tawfiq

The driving tool behind the app is privacy.
The driving tool behind the app is privacy.

The latest app obsession Sarahah has been accused of breaching its users privacy rights after a security researcher discovered the app stores the user's contacts list.

Zachzry Julian, a security analyst from The Intercept found that the honesty app, on both iOS and Android, stores all the contacts from the user's phone onto the company's server.

Typically apps that have a feature which requires access to the phonebook will request access, however at present the Sarahah app does not have such a feature.

The founder of the app, Zain Al-Abidin Tawfiq, has responded to the discovery stating that the app collects the data for a feature that will be integrated into the app over time. He also revealed that the ‘find your friends' feature has been delayed due to a technical issue but the storing of contacts had accidentally not been removed.

Tawfiq promised this will be removed on the next update.

Sarahah is a platform designed to let users share their deepest thoughts, with a key feature that it is all anonymous.

Sarahah is an Arabic word that translates into meaning honesty, and that is exactly what the app aims to do. Its official tag line reads: ‘Are you ready for honesty? Get constructive criticism from friends and colleagues in total anonymity'.

Related: Sarahah: The Saudi Arabian app that puts honesty first