Privacy Policy

August 12, 2015

Thank you for using Wickr! Wickr allows you to encrypt and send audio, video, voice, and text messages, so that you can communicate safely, securely, anonymously — and easily.

This document, our Privacy Policy, governs how Wickr (“we,” “us,” etc.) handles our users (“you,” “your,” etc.) data both in the Wickr app itself (the “Wickr App”) and on our website/servers (collectively, the “Services”).

Our Privacy Policy is incorporated into and is subject to the Wickr Terms of Service, so please read both documents carefully. Your use of the Wickr Services indicates your consent to this Privacy Policy and our Terms of Service. If you do not want to be bound by these agreements, you may not use our Services.

We work very hard to preserve your privacy and security, and we do our best to be as transparent as possible in explaining how we use your data in providing our Services. Please contact us if you have any questions at privacy@wickr.com.

Our Privacy Practices, in Brief:

Wickr has to collect some information from you in order to provide our Services to you, but we do so in a highly limited, highly secure way.

  • We can’t see information you give us. Your information is always disguised with multiple rounds of salted, cryptographic hashing before it is transmitted to our servers. Because of this we don’t know — and can’t reveal to others — anything about you or how you use the Wickr App aside from the date your account was created, the date of last use and the type of device on which such account was installed. Please see our Law Enforcement Guidelines for more details.
  • Wickr deletes all metadata from your messages and media.
  • Deletion is forever. When you delete a message, or when a message expires, our “secure shredder” technology uses forensic deletion techniques to ensure that your data can never be recovered by us or anyone else.
  • Depending on your device, screenshots may or may not be possible. On Android devices, screenshots are not possible. On iOS and desktop, screenshots are possible. Please note that, if someone you communicate with on Wickr App takes a screenshot of your conversation on his or her iOS device, we will immediately notify you and show what was captured in that screenshot. There are no screenshot notifications available on Wickr desktop.
  • There is no magic pill for betrayal and we cannot prevent someone using a camera to take a picture of a message on a screen. Therefore, we strongly encourage you to only send private messages or sensitive information to people you know and trust.
  • You own your data. We do not share or sell any data about our users. Period.

What Information Does Wickr Collect and How Is It Used?

We are committed to limiting our collection of your information to what is necessary to provide you with our Services.

We only collect information from users who create Wickr Accounts. You must create a Wickr Account to use the Wickr App.

What We Donʼt Collect: Equally important to us is the information we don’t collect. We will NEVER collect any location information or have access to the contents of the communications you send using the Wickr App. After messages are deleted (or after they expire), they are forensically deleted and are not retrievable by us or anyone else. (Remember, however, that if you send a Wickr message to another Wickr user, that message might remain on their device even after you delete it from yours, depending on the value you set for the self-destruct time of that message and whether the recipient took a screenshot of the message.)

User-Provided Information: We collect some very limited information from you after you download the Wickr App in order to allow you to create a Wickr Account, and begin using the Wickr App.

  • Your Wickr ID: Your Wickr ID is how you allow others to contact you via Wickr. It does not have to be your real name or provide any reference to your identity. Like other information pertaining to your account, it is disguised with multiple rounds of salted, cryptographic hashing when we associate it with your Device Information (described below). The purpose of this cryptographic representation is to allow you to use our Services without our needing to know who you are.
  • Your Password: We require you to have a password to use the Wickr App, but we never store your password on our servers and don’t store it by default in any form on your device. For your own security, we recommend that you use a long, unique password consisting of a mix of upperand lower-case letters, numbers, and symbols.

Optional User-Provided Information: Within the Wickr App, we provide a few optional features for your convenience. Some of these features, described below, will ask for personal information. If you want to keep your use of Wickr as anonymous as possible, please read these sections carefully in order to understand how we associate information you provide with your Wickr Account.

  • Push Notifications: When setting up your Wickr Account, we will ask if you want to receive notifications of new Wickr messages, software updates, and other administrative and technological developments. Push notifications are functions of devices operating system, so if you enable this feature, your devices operating system’s manufacturer will know that you are using the Wickr App, but will not know anything about how you use it or be able to
    see anything you transmit through it.
  • ID Connections: To allow your friends to find you on Wickr without knowing your Wickr ID, you may choose to associate your other contact information — currently, just your phone number or email address — with your Wickr ID. When you use this feature, we disguise your contact information with multiple rounds of salted cryptographic hashing for storage on our servers. This way, you can let your friends search for you on Wickr without revealing your contact information to us. If you use ID Connect to associate your phone number with your Wickr ID, we use a third party service solely to deliver a confirmation SMS to you, but that party will not receive any information about you other than your phone number, and the SMS message itself will contain no information except a confirmation link.
  • Invitations: If you enable Wickr Invitations, the Wickr App will be able to access your device’s contacts in order to invite them to use our Services. We never store your device contacts on our servers in any way. All invitations are generated locally on your device, without sharing any information with us.
  • Find Friends: Find Friends allows you to search for contacts who have used ID Connect to associate their phone number or email address with their Wickr Accounts. If you use Find Friends, the Wickr App will send a disguised representation of your contacts phone number and email address to our servers, at which point our server will check that representation against our database to see whether that contact has an associated Wickr ID.
  • Encrypting Cloud Data: The Wickr App will allow you to share PDFs and image files you have stored with cloud storage services Google Drive, Dropbox, and Box. The Wickr App will make encrypted copies of such files when sending as Wickr messages, which expire when the message self-destructs. Cloud storage of your files on Google Drive, Dropbox and Box will be governed by these cloud storage services’ terms, conditions, and privacy policies, so please familiarize yourself with those documents before you use this feature.
  • Auto-Login: By default, the Wickr App will automatically log out of your account after a set period of inactivity, and in order to use the Wickr App again, you will have to reenter your password. If you enable Auto-Login, you will be able to use the Wickr App after a period of inactivity without having to enter your password each time. While you will still benefit from Wickrʼs security (e.g., deletion, encryption, etc.) and may find that your user experience is more seamless, this option is less secure than the default logout and password requirements, and we suggest that users who enable Auto-Login retain other security measures on their devices, like enabling screen locks and PINs through your device settings.
  • Crash Log: For the purpose of debugging and error correction as well as for system continuity, users might choose to send crash logs to Wickr when prompted by the app. The logs do not contain any user personal information and they pertain only to the Wickr App. The process is voluntary and users can choose not to send their crash logs to us at any time. Participating in errors/crash reporting will help Wickr to become a better app.

Automatically Collected Information: Wickr collects two types of information automatically during your setup and use of the Wickr App: Device Information and Aggregate Usage Data.

  • Device Information: The Wickr App will collect a hashed representation of both your mobile device type and your mobile device’s hardware ID during registration, in order to connect that information with your account and to tie your account to your device.
  • Aggregate Usage Data: During the operation of our services, we also collect aggregate, anonymous information about basic usage statistics, such as the number of messages sent by all Wickr users daily, what types of messages our users tend to send (e.g., voice messages more often than text), and so forth. We never attempt to (and cannot) identify users associated with any of this information.

What Information Does Wickr Share with Third Parties?

We do not share any user information we have with third parties, with the exception of the third-party service with whom we share your phone number for the sole purpose of sending you an SMS confirmation if you choose to associate your phone number with your Wickr ID. Please note that the provision of a phone number is completely at the user’s discretion.

Law Enforcement:

Please see our Law Enforcement Guidelines but here are the highlights.

We will always notify you of any third party requests for your information unless legally unable to do so. As soon as legally permitted to do so, we will notify our users of requests for their information. We require a warrant before handing over the contents of your communication, however, because of the nature of our technology, the contents of your communication will be undecipherable if obtained.

You Can Deactivate Your Account

You can deactivate your account at any time. Once deactivated your account will be irrevocably suspended, ensuring that nobody can use that Wickr ID again in order to prevent impersonation. If you wish to deactivate your Wickr account, go to Wickr Settings, Account, tap “Terminate Account” and verify by entering your password.

We Retain As Little Data As Possible, for the Least Time Possible

Data Retention on Wickrʼs Servers: Our servers store the encrypted messages that you send and receive only long enough to ensure their reliable delivery to each device associated to your account. Undelivered messages are deleted after 7 days. We retain non- message data (i.e. Types of messages) for as long as you use the Wickr Services and for an indefinite time thereafter.

Data Retention on Your Device: All messages are stored in encrypted form on end users’ devices. You choose your own retention policy for your messages by choosing how long a message is viewable before it is deleted (via the self-destruct time for sent messages and manual deletion for your device). Deleted messages cannot be recovered.

We Are Serious About Security

We are concerned about safeguarding the confidentiality of your information. We provide physical, electronic, and procedural safeguards to protect information we process and maintain. For example, we limit access to this information to authorized employees who need to know that information in order to operate, develop, or improve our Services. No sensitive information is in the clear: we take reasonable efforts (as described herein) to ensure that everything we store is not retrievable by us or anyone else.

However, as security experts, we know that no security system can prevent all potential security breaches. Therefore we have limited the potential implications of such a breach by designing our system so that in the event of a breach, we would have the least possible information about you.

Children and COPPA

We do not maintain any personally identifiable information about our users or their communications. You can learn more about the information Wickr does and doesn’t collect here.

Wickr is not directed to children under the age of 13. If we learn that we have collected personally identifiable information from a child under 13, we will take appropriate steps to delete such information as soon as possible. 

Customer Service

Any information provided to us by our users voluntarily when they request customer support (e.g., an email address) will be used to respond to that individual request and may be logged as part of our effort to improve our customer service and solve any product-related issues. These email addresses cannot be linked to our users’ Wickr accounts, unless users voluntarily include their Wickr account information in their customer service-related requests. We strongly discourage our users from disclosing their login and password information.

We Can Change This Privacy Policy

This Privacy Policy may be updated from time to time, for any reason. We will notify you of any changes to our Privacy Policy by posting the new Privacy Policy here along with information about what has changed and an archive of past policies. You are advised to consult this Privacy Policy regularly for any changes.

Users Outside the US

If you use our Services and reside outside the U.S., your information will be transferred to the U.S. and will be processed and stored there under U.S. privacy standards. By using our Services and providing information to us, you consent to such transfer to and processing in the U.S.

You are responsible for complying with any laws or regulations in your country that govern use of applications and services like Wickr.

Contact Us if You Have Questions

If you have any questions regarding privacy while using our Services, or have questions about our practices, please contact us via email at privacy@wickr.com.