WhatsApp alternatives: Today, it is impossible to imagine a world without communications apps. Chat services offer an easy way to communicate with anyone worldwide without incurring the hefty cost of long-distance calling or messaging. With an internet connection, you can talk to your friends and loved ones from any corner of the world.
WhatsApp is the most popular messaging app today, with more than 1 billion subscribers in more than 180 countries globally. In 2014, Facebook acquired the platform, which left security-conscious users and security experts concerned. This is mainly because most Facebook third-party apps had multiple security breaches that put thousands of private data at risk.
If you have landed on this page, it is probably because you are looking for a reliable alternative to WhatsApp, and you are not alone. Millions of WhatsApp users are looking for other apps to migrate to before the May 15 deadline.
On May 15, 2021, WhatsApp will officially start to share user data with Facebook, its mother company. This is meant to connect your WhatsApp activity with Facebook for targeted marketing. By accepting these new terms and conditions, WhatsApp users will allow Facebook to access their data.
Why you should be worried
When you join WhatsApp, you are promised end-to-end encryption, which is a reliable security feature. This means that your activity on WhatsApp is encrypted, making it impossible for this data to be stolen and used against you.
While the new policy does not change this, any other information outside the content of calls and messages is open to the public. This includes your bio, pictures, status updates, and phone number. Additional information that will be open to the public will include who you talk to, including group chats, how often you talk to them, the device you use, and the amount of time you spend on the app.
Fortunately, the internet is diverse, offering plenty of options to satisfy your security and privacy needs when using messaging apps.
5 WhatsApp alternatives that care about privacy
Signal private messaging app
While Signal is created by the same people who developed end-to-end encryption for WhatsApp, it uses an open-source system, making it safer than WhatsApp. It is also packed with extra security features such as screen security features and self-destructive messages feature. When the screen security feature is turned on, it makes it impossible for the recipient to take screenshots of the chats.
In terms of privacy, Signal encrypts your text messages and all data shared on the platform, including media files and calls. This means that your data is secure even from the developers of the app. This is why Signal has become popular, even though it is new in the market.
Other features include the ability to create tickers and create groups.
Telegram is a UK based messaging app that has been the best alternative to WhatsApp for many years. It comes loaded with numerous features in an easy to use interface, making it easy to use for new users. With open API, it is a trusted platform used as an alternative to WhatsApp by millions of subscribers.
Telegram uses end-to-end encryption and comes with the self-destructive message feature. On telegram, you can create groups with up to 200,000 users and enjoy sharing up to 2GB files at a time. It also has voice and video call options, among other interesting features such as games and bots.
Developed by a company based in Switzerland, the user interface is attractive, and this app uses an open-source system, making it a safe alternative to WhatsApp. This is an independently audited service, and the results are made public. It used end-to-end encryption and has a self-destructive option for messages.
The best part about this app is that it comes with an independent cloud facility where all app backups are made. You can use it for video and audio calls, including group video calls of up to 10 people. Users can log into Wire on multiple devices simultaneously, which is a feature not available on WhatsApp.
Viber is a Japanese VoIP application that is a high competitor for WhatsApp. It comes with all the features you find on WhatsApp plus other additional features that are absent on WhatsApp. All your messages, calls, and media shared on Viber is protected with end-to-end encryption, and it allows you to create groups with up to 250 members and supports video calls with up to 20 users.
Viber has support for stickers and GIFs with the option of importing or making your own. The best part is that Viber supports international calls to users without the app at nominal rates and can be used on multiple devices simultaneously.
There are numerous communities on Viber where you can comment on posts and socialize with people outside your circles.
If most people on your contact list have apple devices, you can enjoy E2E privacy using this application.
Other ways to protect your privacy online
Protect your passwords
The best way to protect your online accounts is to use a password manager. This application helps you to generate strong passwords for all your accounts. It also keeps all your passwords in one place and ensures one password breach does not compromise all your accounts.
Use a VPN
If you are a fan of using free public Wi-Fi to access your messaging apps and other online activity, you should invest in a VPN. A Virtual Private Network improves these messaging apps for privacy and security by encrypting all data shared to and from your device in a public Wi-Fi connection. This encryption makes it impossible for hackers to snoop or intercept data since they cannot track your activity.
Use private browsers
If you prefer logging into messaging apps through browsers, you should consider using private browsers. This protects you from online tracking for marketing and allows you to access sites censored in your region.
Tor browser is one of the best free browsers to use for privacy and security. It routes web traffic through its network, where your activity and locations are masked. Ensure you use Tor without any extensions and plugins to reduce the chances of exploitation.
This browser extension is compatible with Chrome, Opera, Safari, Mozilla, and Brave. It automatically forces an encrypted connection between the websites you want to visit and your browser. You can use it to protect against man-in-the-middle attacks and data theft.
While WhatsApp may be big, it is not the only reliable messaging application in the market. With the recent privacy concerns, finding an alternative can be beneficial if you value your privacy. Any of the applications above will offer the same features you enjoy on WhatsApp, Privacy, and so much more. See how to share your WhatsApp location.Click here to leave a comment