You can finally delete messages in Snapchat — here's how

  • You can now delete your messages from chats with other Snapchat users.
  • It's a new feature Snap just rolled out and it's easy to use.
Tap and hold a message to delete it.
Todd Haselton | CNBC
Tap and hold a message to delete it.

Snap rolled out a new feature this week that finally lets you delete Snapchat messages you've sent to other users.

Previously, text messages sent to your contacts on Snapchat remained in the message log until both parties viewed the chat or unless they sat unopened for 30 days. In group chats, the messages deleted after 24 hours. There was also an option to clear an entire conversation, but not a single message.

Now you can delete a message even before it's viewed, which is useful if you sent one by mistake or have regrets about what you sent. Here's what you do:

  • Open Snapchat
  • Swipe right across the screen to visit the Friends page.
  • Choose the Chat column. You'll see a list of all of the ongoing chats you have.
  • Send a new message or select a message you already sent.
  • To delete the message, tap the message and hold it.
  • Select "Delete."

Now the message is deleted, which means users in the one-on-one chat or in a group chat won't be able to see what you sent. They will, however, see a notice that you've deleted a line of text.

Snap says that it attempts to "remove the message from [Snapchat's] servers and friends' devices," but warns that "this might not always work, like if someone has a bad internet connection or an old version of Snapchat."

It's a decent privacy mechanism and seems to meet with some GDPR rules that give users more control of their data — at least if you want something completely off of Snapchat's logs and don't want anyone to see it — but it might not always be fail-safe.

Disclosure: CNBC parent NBCUniversal is an investor in Snap.