The messaging app with the highest number of users in the world, Whatsapp, wants to start collecting and sharing data with its parent company, Facebook. Information about your phone that could predict your behaviour like signal strength and battery level will be accumulated.
In the past, sharing Whatsapp data with Facebook was an option. However, with the introduction of Whatsapp’s new policy, the incorporation between the top social network and Whatsapp becomes more pronounced. This move has led several individuals to voice out privacy concerns on various social media platforms.
The Controversy Surrounding Facebook
The most-used chat app clearly stated that anyone who doesn’t agree to the new policy will not enjoy Whatsapp’s services. If you want your information kept safe, continue reading to learn about the best Whatsapp alternatives.
Best Messaging App Options to Whatsapp
Your data is fast becoming a valuable commodity to firms and the government. This is why it needs to be protected fiercely. Every messaging app on this list offers end-to-end encryption which is the best form of file encoding.
For a third party to break end-to-end encryption, even with a sophisticated operating system, it would take years. Before you try out any new chat app, check if it has end-to-end encryption.
Wickr was established in 2012 by privacy advocates. It was one of the premier instant messaging apps to offer end-to-end encryption.
Wickr can notify you if the device you’re communicating with screenshots your chat. It also stops third-party keyboards from being used on the app. Third-party keyboards can be used to beat end-to-end encryption through a recording of keystrokes.
Wickr is so careful about your privacy that the app doesn’t allow syncing across devices. You can use privacy features like self-destroying messages and irrecoverable erased files.
It is free for up to 10 users. If you want to go beyond that, you’ll have to make monthly payments that top out at $25 every 30 days. It’s also available on various platforms such as Windows, Mac, iOS, Linux and Android too.
Signal was created by Whisper Systems and is very privacy-oriented. The app, which has an open-source code, can be checked by anyone to verify its claims of never siphoning data from users.
Signal is also used by privacy advocates who have risked their lives to stop spying like Edward Snowden. Even Whatsapp’s co-founder, Brian Acton donated $50 million to the company to advance its encryption protocol. Signal is highly used by journalists and people exposing information to the public.
Alternative Measures to keep your Data Safe
1.Download a Trusted VPN
A VPN app is regarded as one of the best tools when protecting your data online. Whether you’re using mobile data, public Wi-Fi, or your home router, you’re at risk of experiencing a privacy breach.
Unencrypted data can easily be read by any hacker, corporation, or government. A VPN’s function is to scramble data in a manner that confuses any potential hacker. This way, your online traffic becomes safe and immune to spying.
2. Use Tor Network
Tor network is one of the safest ways to browse the internet. Your internet service provider and the government would have no idea about your online activity.
The issue with using Tor Network on its official browser is that it protects your activity only in the browser. Also, anyone trying to spy on you will know you’re using Tor. To prevent this occurrence, combine the use of Tor with a VPN.
Apps like Signal and Wickr never spy on your data. Taking measures like using the Tor network and a VPN will also strengthen your data’s security.
Author: Allan Bangirana
Allan Bangirana has a taste for all kinds of topics and usually writes about tech, entertainment, sports and community projects that make a difference in society.