Wickr Me, an Amazon-owned encrypted chat platform, will stop accepting new users after December 31st and will shut down completely on December 31st of this year, according to the company’s announcement.
The decision, first announced in November, comes after some controversy over a super-secure chat app that lets users sign up without a phone number or other potential identifying information, prompting hackers, drug dealers, and journalist.
In June, an NBC News study revealed that Wickr Me had become the go-to product for many who trade child sexual abuse material. Investigations have identified 72 lawsuits in the past five years in which defendants allegedly used Wickr (as it was commonly known) to trade child sexual abuse material. Law enforcement officials and representatives of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children told NBC News at the time that Wickr did not do enough to detect or report the trading of such material on its platform.
In a statement provided to NBC News in June, an Amazon Web Services spokesperson said: activity. We respond promptly to reports of illegal activity, promptly respond to law enforcement requests, and take appropriate action. Anyone found violating our terms may have their account suspended. ”
“Wickr is responsive and cooperating with law enforcement on these important issues,” the spokesperson said.
In a statement in November, the company said it was closing Wickr Me to devote more resources to focus on its business-to-business offerings AWS Wickr and Wickr Enterprise. This post does not address dealings with government agencies such as the Department of Defense or Homeland Security.
When NBC News tried to create a new test account in the app on January 1st, I got the following popup: -2023.”
Founded in 2012, Wickr applies advanced encryption to consumer messaging products. By 2015, the company had raised his $39 million in funding. In the same year, many news outlets reported that the Islamic State terrorist group used the app to recruit new members. In 2016, one of the first successful prosecutions of him for trading child pornography on an app was reported by the Deseret Morning News.
In June 2021, Wickr was acquired by Amazon Web Services. Since the acquisition, the company has faced problems with government contracts with government agencies such as Customs and Border Protection, and for its role in a records-related scandal in which the app was used to automatically subvert government communications. It got a lot of attention.