Twitter lets users delete direct messages from their own side of the conversation, the recipient still keeps a copy unless they decide to delete them as well. As it turns out, those messages aren’t getting deleted at all, despite showing the message has been deleted. Twitter stores DMs dating back years, according to a report from security researcher Karan Saini, in TechCrunch. The messages kept by twitter included those from deactivated and suspended accounts.
By downloading the archived data from your Twitter account, you can access the data. The data appears to only be available for the user that sent or received the messages, but the fact that it isn’t deleting the messages when Twitter says that it does, is alarming many privacy and security experts. Twitter is at least aware of the issue, commenting to TechCrunch that it is “looking into this further to ensure we have considered the entire scope of the issue.”
The revelation is a healthy reminder that nothing is ever really gone on the internet even when a company says that it’s been deleted.