When you delete your private direct messages on Twitter, it is safe to assume that many would probably assume that they are deleted for good. As it turns out it might not be the case. In a report from TechCrunch, it has been discovered that Twitter actually holds onto old and deleted direct messages for years.

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This was initially discovered by security research Karan Saini who found that not only does Twitter not delete old direct messages, but also keeps them even from accounts that have been deactivated or suspended. This means that if you had a Twitter account that you deactivated from years ago, there is a chance that the direct messages you had associated with it could still be kept.

This seems to go against Twitter’s previous claim where they said that when an account had been deactivated, there will be “a very brief period in which we may be able to access account information, including tweets.” Twitter has since responded to the discovery and while they do not acknowledge it, a spokesperson said that the company was “looking into this further to ensure we have considered the entire scope of the issue.”

Clearly this is a pretty huge privacy issue since we naturally assume that delete means delete. It would be a different story if it was an archived message.

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