With all of the apps and services out there claiming to offer superior data security, it can be difficult to know which companies to trust. We thought we’d use our platform to spotlight an app that we really love: Signal. It’s a secure messaging app that any smartphone user can start using today. Let’s get into the details.
First of all, the user interface is incredibly simple and easy-to-use. From the main dashboard, you simply click the New Message icon on the top right, choose a Signal user to message, and start typing. It’s just like any other messaging app in this regard, and thus equally simple to navigate. Plus, it supports voice and video calls, so you can avoid using an additional app like FaceTime or Skype when communicating with fellow Signal users.
But that’s just the surface level of Signal’s appeal, however, as the real novelty is the process happening behind the scenes. Every single chat that passes through Signal’s server is encrypted. And that includes calls and video chats as well. On top of that, if you change your mind about a message you’ve sent later on, you can force individual conversations to delete themselves. The informed reader may note that these features are similar to that of WhatsApp, but it’s important to remember who owns that app: Facebook. And it’s getting harder to trust one of the biggest privacy offenders of the decade. Both WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger offer encryption settings, but they have to be turned on manually. And Facebook can still extract metadata from your messaging habits, like who you’re talking to and how frequently.
All in all, the app is simple, utilitarian, and completely secure. It doesn’t have the emojis and stickers and such that other platforms provide, but it eschews bells and whistles for the true necessities. And best of all, you can set it up as your primary SMS client on your phone. If you’re looking for simple steps to take towards protecting your privacy, this one is a no-brainer.
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