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Bad News: Your Slack Messages Probably Aren't Private

In a now-viral video, one TikToker exposes how she found out that her co-workers were talking about her in separate group chats.

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Most of us have been warned at some point that if we put something out there on the internet, in some form or another, it's out there permanently for all eyes to see.

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But when it comes to private emails and messaging apps, many of us believe that what's written and received in one-on-one conversations is inaccessible to the masses. And turns out we are probably wrong.

One TikToker seems to be blowing the lid off of privacy assumptions by exposing how messages on the popular work messaging app Slack aren't so private after all.

Related: 5 Tips and Tricks You Need to Know About Slack

In a video that's been viewed over 857,000 times, TikToker Dero shared a pro-tip she discovered while using her company's Slack which revealed that if an employee searches for their name, channels they might not even know existed will pop up showcasing anytime that name is mentioned.

"If you work for a moderately sized company, like a midsize to large sized company and you use Slack, go ahead and search your name on Slack," she told viewers. "Because you will be surprised at the channels that are public that are talking about you that you can read."

@dandydemon If you do this and anything comes up, pLEASE stitch lol. Thankfully, it wasn't anything too terrible but I had never directly spoken to anyone in that group chat so it was quite the shocker #slack ♬ original sound - Dero

She then went on to share that after an all-hands meeting, she felt compelled to search for her name and found a channel containing notes from when she was being interviewed, as well as multiple group chats talking about her behind her back.

"I became a running joke, apparently, like I was named dropped many many times in that same group chat," she said. "So it may be valuable to look that up."

Related: The Co-Founder Behind Slack Shares What He Did 140 Times Last Year Alone -- and How It Helped Prevent Burnout

In a follow-up video, Dero alleged that the group chats included one where a supervisor made fun of one of her answers to an ice-breaker question and her mullet hairstyle. She also clarified that she no longer works for the company and that she was working remotely at the time so she never actually met her coworkers in person.

@dandydemon Replying to @rogerinthehouse ♬ original sound - Dero

Commenters were livid on behalf of the TikToker, many calling her "brave" and confessing that they would be too nervous to try the tactic out.

"That's horrifying omg, I'm too sensitive for that kind of information," one admitted.

"I'm a little scared to know," another said. "I don't think I can handle that kind of information."

On Slack, users can create "channels" or group chats between two or more users where invited members can chat in one space. If the channel is not set to private, any user on the network could hypothetically find and search the contents of that channel, even if they are not a member of it.

The default setting for Slack channels is not private, so users have to convert a channel to private to avoid anyone poking around in their conversations.

Moral of the story? If you don't have anything nice to say, it's probably best to just not say anything at all.

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