The Best Messaging Apps for Privacy and Security

May 30, 2020

From WhatsApp to Snapchat, messaging apps provide a free and easy service to communicate with friends, family, and co-workers.

Before you search on the app store willy-nilly or ask your friends about their messaging app of choice, be sure to take a step back and examine whether your choice can adequately guard your privacy and security. One way to determine that is if the app offers end-to-end encryption (E2EE).

Without encryption, private messages can be read by the company behind the app, as well as third parties such as governments who like to collect private data on their citizens. Not even using the best VPN would help you if you’re using a messaging service that stores identifiable metadata about your conversations on its server (like Threema and Wire, reviewed in this list).

Encryption makes societies freer and, thankfully, several messaging apps use E2EE to prevent anyone except you and the intended recipient from reading the message’s contents.

What is encrypted messaging?

End-to-end encryption (E2EE) is a method of encrypting data that only allows the sender and receiver of the message to decrypt and read messages passed between them. More importantly, encryption prevents apps from storing copies of your messages on its servers, which would put them within reach of government authorities.

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