“This tape will self-destruct in five seconds” became a household phrase in the 60s and 70s thanks to the creators of Mission Impossible, and now 30 years later, the ability to send your own self-destruct text message has become a reality thanks to a new innovation launched by Staellium UK Ltd — StealthText.
Whether you’re a celebrity who’s up to no good or a business executive dealing in sensitive information, the last thing you want is for private text messages you’ve sent to fall into the wrong hands. StealthText allows you to send a text message safely in the knowledge that it will delete itself from the recipient’s mobile phone as soon as the person has read it, finally allowing the sender control of his or her own information.
Until now, mobile phone users have had to rely on recipients to delete sensitive text messages on their behalf; although a number of high profile cases (Rebecca Loos), have shown that this cannot always be relied on. However, by simply keying in a code, StealthText users can rest assured that the message goes up in smoke, just like the famous tapes scenes in the Mission Impossible series.
Those wishing to sign up to the service can simply text STEALTH to 80880 to receive a link that will allow them to download the StealthText applet via a WAP connection. Once a message has been sent, the recipient receives a text notification showing the sender’s name and providing a link to the message. Once opened, the message will disappear after a short period of time (about 40 seconds). To unsubscribe to the service simply text STOP to 80880.
Staellium, the company behind the breakthrough, has already received enquiries from interested parties as diverse as financial services, MOD and celebrity agents, demonstrating the breadth of use.
Carole Barnum, CEO and Co-founder of Staellium UK comments, “The technology behind StealthText is derived from military technology, so the comparisons with Mission Impossible are justified. The ability to send a self-destruct message has massive benefits for people from all walks of life, from everyday mobile users, through to celebrities and business people, but this is just the start. In spring 2006 we will be launching new services such as self-destruct email, voice and picture messages, so ultimately no one will ever have to worry about their messages or pictures ending up in the wrong hands ever again.”
SECURITY: To comply with legal requirements, when the message is deleted from the recipient’s phone, the ‘paper trail’ and log stays on a protected, secure server for a period of time before being completely deleted. To prevent abuse, the recipient has no access to the server.
TO REPLY: The recipient can easily reply with StealthTexts, creating a private channel of two-way communication. StealthText is also a widely accessible application for sending self-destruct messages via SMS and WAP. In the mass-market version, every WAP-enabled handset – currently 80% of the 40 millions handsets in the UK, can download a simple applet and send self-destruct messages to any other mobile phone – recipients don’t need to have the applet to receive a message, just if they wish to send one themselves.
TO SEND A FRIEND TWO FREE SELF DESTRUCT MESSAGES: To have access to StealthText, someone needs to have sent you the other part of the “secret code”, turning StealthText in a peer-to-peer application. Each user sending StealthText to someone else will have 2 free StealthTexts* (* sold in bundles of 12 texts for the price of 10).
A 24 hour helpline is available for subscribers 08000 1128 61. The service is currently available around the world for users of UK SIM cards only. StealthText will be available across Europe, in the US and Asia early 2006.