WhatsApp vs Signal vs Telegram: Which messaging app should you use to secure your conversations in 2022?

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WhatsApp vs Signal vs Telegram: Which messaging app should you use to secure your conversations in 2022?
Which messaging app should you use in 2022?Unsplash
  • There are dozens of messaging apps out there, but WhatsApp, Signal and Telegram are amongst the most popular ones that also have privacy features built-in.
  • While WhatsApp is used by hundreds of millions of users around the world, some might not consider it to be the most privacy-friendly app out there.
  • We compare WhatsApp, Signal and Telegram to understand which messaging app is the most suitable to secure your conversations in 2022.
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Instant messaging apps are a dime a dozen now, but WhatsApp still remains the favourite of hundreds of millions of users worldwide. However, with privacy becoming more important now than ever before, it is worth evaluating the options that we have and making the right choice to have secure conversations.

Over the past few years, with Facebook dropping the ball on privacy, WhatsApp has come under fire from privacy enthusiasts around the world. This has resulted in an increase in the popularity of alternative chatting apps like Signal and Telegram.

But what exactly do you get with these alternatives? Which chatting app is better for your privacy? Let’s find out.

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Best chatting apps for your privacy in 2022



There are plenty of chatting apps with a wide range of features, but in this story, we focus on the three most popular apps which also have important privacy features like end-to-end encryption built-in.

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WhatsApp



WhatsApp is by far one of the most popular messaging apps out there. It has had a head start over most of its competition, and lacks plenty of features that have been available on other apps. However, it remains popular because of its massive user base. How often have you seen your contacts migrate to a new messaging service at once?

The lack of features, though, doesn’t mean it is missing out on one of the core aspects of communication these days – privacy. WhatsApp implemented end-to-end encryption in 2016, based on the Signal protocol.

Every message you send or calls you initiate on WhatsApp are end-to-end encrypted by default, so you don’t have to worry about either you or your contacts being the weak link in your conversations. In fact, there is no option to turn off encryption.

There are other privacy features on offer like notifications for every time the security code of your contacts changes, disappearing messages and more.

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However, WhatsApp is plagued by other security concerns, which includes the fact that it is owned by Facebook. The social media giant’s controversial user data collection policies have come under sharp criticism from various authorities, including those in India.

As such, you might want to look for other alternatives and slowly transition your messaging groups over to those apps.

Signal



Signal has been the golden standard for encrypted messaging for a long time now, and the app has only gotten better over the years. The best part about the app is that it is open-source and free, so anyone can inspect the codebase of the app if they want to.

Unfortunately, Signal misses out on some of the features which are available on other apps, like UPI payments, starred messages, live location sharing and more.

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However, if you want the most secure and privacy-friendly messaging app out there, Signal is the best option available right now.

Telegram



Telegram is another alternative to WhatsApp and Signal, but it comes with one major drawback – end-to-end encryption is not enabled by default.

In fact, one of the highlights of Telegram – its support for multiple devices – goes down the drain when you enable encryption in a chat since those chats are not synchronised to other devices.

Another point worth considering is that Telegram logs your IP addresses and collects other user data, and its encryption has not been formally audited by independent security researchers yet.

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Telegram does have a long list of features that are not available on either WhatsApp or Signal, and its apps are very responsive, too. However, if privacy is your main concern, it comes last in this list.

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