Warning: *privacy not included with this product
Houseparty took off in popularity around the start of the pandemic in 2020. However, owner Epic Games recently announced the app would be shut down in October 2021, making it a short-lived, flash-in-the-pan pandemic success, now going defunct. Houseparty is designed for hanging out with friends, playing games, integrating with Snapchat, and live streaming Fortnite. The app lets you have up to eight people in a video call room at once and users can have as many rooms open as they like. And just like at a regular house party, you can float from room to room easily. You can even "sneak" into Houseparty without your contacts knowing. The Houseparty app works on Android, iOS, Mac, and as a Google Chrome extension (sorry, no Firefox or Safari support).
What could happen if something goes wrong?
What can be used to sign up?
Registration to Houseparty requires giving them your name, email address, birth date. Houseparty asks for your phone number but no longer requires it. Be warned, Houseparty makes it very difficult to see the option to skip giving them your phone. Make sure you look closely for the "skip" button to avoid giving them your phone number.
What data does the company collect?
Most commonly: name, email address, birthday, customer demographics, interests and behavior. Other categories of data may also be collected. Content of communications between you and another user or group of users (may contain voice).
Information about your interactions with and on Houseparty. For example, they collect information about how long you chat with your friends.
How does the company use this data?
How can you control your data?
What is the company’s known track record of protecting users’ data?
Houseparty was at the center of controversy over supposed massive data breach in March 2020, when some users claimed that their online accounts, including Spotify, Paypal, Instagram, Snapchat, Netflix, PayPal, have been compromised. Houseparty denied a data breach, claiming that the rumors are a smear campaign. The company also offered a $1 million bounty to a person who can prove a breach. It remains unclear if the breach happened.
Can this product be used offline?
User-friendly privacy information?
Houseparty does have a FAQ page on its website with answers written in a simple language. This approach seems to favor Houseparty's main audience of young people.
Links to privacy information
Does this product meet our Minimum Security Standards?
Log-in does not require a strong password as '12345' is accepted. Calls are open not only to invited people, but also some people not in your 'friends' list.
We found no public evidence of regular security updates for Houseparty
Crashing the party: beware the cyber risks of virtual meet-up apps like HousepartyThe Conversation
Video chat app Houseparty offers $1 million bounty for proof of sabotage after hacking rumorsCNBC
Messenger Rooms are Facebook’s answer to Zoom and Houseparty for the pandemicThe Verge
How to prevent unwanted people from joining your Houseparty callsAndroid Central
Houseparty denies hack as credential stuffing attacks spreadComputer Weekly
Houseparty reports 50M sign-ups in past month amid COVID-19 lockdownsTechCrunch
The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly Of New App HousePartyWomen Love Tech
Five things you should know before using the Houseparty AppTIme Out
Houseparty ReviewPC Magazine
Fortnite users can now livestream gameplay to Houseparty’s social video appTechCrunch
What HouseParty’s End Means For The Other Apps We Loved During LockdownForbes
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