In today’s vast and fast-moving world, communicating has never been easier. With the help of technology and its equally fascinating rate of advancement, we can now send texts and make calls with just a few simple taps. Not only through messaging apps, keeping up with your friends and family can be done in varied ways, such as dropping a new picture on Instagram or tweeting about your day.
Unfortunately, with every good, there’s always something bad that follows. In this case, more than just peeping eyes on the train or that one sneaky sibling, the company that runs the messaging services can also take a look (and sometimes more) at your conversations and use them to their advantage. Not to mention the meddling hands of hackers who are definitely up to no good.
As technology continues to advance and the need for a compatible messaging app continues to rise, so does the matter of the apps’ security. Though some companies try to keep a blind eye on this issue of morality, some have taken the right steps to make sure of your data security. Here we have concluded some of the best messaging apps you can use for maximum comfort and peace of mind.
Developed by a non-profit organization, Signal is the go-to messaging app for the security-conscious. This is because Signal is equipped with the industry’s top-tier encryption that is nodded on by many online security activists. You can also access your Signal account from its Chrome plug-in on your business laptop for free on App and Play Store.
Besides the usual texting and calling features, Signal has recently updated its services and now carries encrypted stickers and custom wallpaper. Moreover, now it also lets you do a group video call with up to 40 participants at one time.
Just like Signal, WhatsApp also uses the E2EE (end-to-end encryption) method to protect your texts from being accessed by unauthorized parties. In fact, they work together and use the same method of encryption called Signal Protocol. However, despite the similarities, concerns have been raised over WhatsApp’s future security due to the app’s ownership being taken over by Meta (formerly Facebook).
Despite its worrisome factor, this messaging app continues to thrive and has become people’s favorite means of communication. More than just for personal use, businesses around the world have made use of WhatsApp’s business features to connect with their customers. On top of Android and Apple smartphones, WhatsApp is also available on your desktop.
3. Samsung and Google Messages
If you are a Samsung phone user, then this one is for you. Made especially for Samsung products, Samsung Messages is usually installed on your phone when you first receive it. Thanks to Samsung’s Knox security, this app is also equipped with end-to-end encryption.
Furthermore, you would also find Google Messages as one of the pre-installed messaging apps on your Android phone. Though both these apps are similar in their features, Google Messages supports rich communication services (RCS) across its users. Meanwhile, Samsung Messages’ RCS is still subjected to your phone’s carrier. Among other important features, this protocol allows you to send high-resolution photos and videos, as well as make payments and share your location.
Marketed as the most secure collaboration platform, Wire is now mostly catered to businesses for their secure internal communication. Protected with its own Proteus encryption, it is based on Signal Protocol. Moreover, it also follows Signal steps and uses open-source code that can be audited by external parties to ensure the app’s security.
Wire is accessible on both Apple and Android phones, as well as its desktop version. Furthermore, it offers free accounts for both personal and business purposes for up to 5 people. Its premium “Wire for Enterprise” version starts at $7.65, with features including group conferencing and team management.
Much like Wire, Wickr specializes in developing secure-communication software for personal and business use. Though, more than the typical E2EE, Wickr Pro—its corporate-targeted product, includes a VPN service called Wickr Open Access (WOA). Furthermore, Wickr Pro’s secure video call also features a screen-sharing option for hassle-free virtual presentation.
On the other hand, Wickr Me—Wickr Pro’s sibling, caters to security-conscious individuals looking for a secure personal communication platform. While Wickr Me is free of charge, Wickr Pro comes as a freemium app with various monthly subscription plans. Wickr’s Apps are available on your Linux, iOS, and Android devices, as well as its desktop version for Windows and Mac.
Just like Samsung Messages, iMessage is Apple’s native messaging app. However, beyond end-to-end encryption for your texts, iMessage also applies it on their FaceTime feature, making your video call experience private only to you and your friends.
Besides its benefits, it is best to not back up your conversations to iCloud for maximum security, as iMessages’ encryption is only applicable on its application across all your Apple devices. So, if you still want to keep a copy of your conversations, it is wise to try other means of backing up your iPhone for maximum data safety.
At Dust, end-to-end encryption alone is not enough. This application takes the term secure communication to a whole new level by storing your messages on your phone’s RAM for as long as possible, exposing it to fewer hacking and data pirating possibilities. Ever a loyal companion, Dust will also let you know when your chatting partner takes a screenshot of your conversation.
On top of its messaging features, Dust also offers a privacy-watchdog feature and stealth searching mode for you to surf the internet safely. This app further ensures privacy by identifying previous and current breached information. Dust is available at no charge on both iOS and Android devices.
All in all, despite the security that these messaging apps give, remember to take more safety precautions as you send sensitive information online. You can do so by deleting texts with personal information once their purpose is fulfilled or sending auto-destruct ones. Be safe and take care!