five whatsapp alternatives in 2020 – best privacy and security for you

Posted by tzul at 2020-04-13

Updated on January 20, 2020

WhatsApp, with more than 1 billion users in 180 countries, is the most popular messaging application in the world.

Facebook acquired WhatsApp in 2014, which worries privacy experts and security conscious users. After all, Facebook and its third-party applications involve multiple security breaches, leading to the disclosure of thousands of users' private information. However, WhatsApp has always insisted that they are a stand-alone application and are committed to creating and maintaining secure message services.

And that is about to change. Facebook recently announced that they are considering merging three independent messaging platforms. They plan to combine the messaging capabilities of Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and instagram to allow users to send messages to each other across the three networks.

It has been confirmed that its current plan will include the introduction of end-to-end encryption on all three platforms. In theory, this will make Facebook messenger and instagram as secure as WhatsApp. However, the plan could also make WhatsApp less secure to meet the standards of other platforms.

WhatsApp security vulnerability

WhatsApp promises to provide end-to-end encryption, which is a good security feature. However, the company needs to address several security vulnerabilities.

"Facebook and other companies in the Facebook family may also use the information we provide to improve your service experience, such as making product suggestions."

"In the general process of providing services, we will not retain user information. However, we do host data that users decide to be part of their account information, including their profile picture, profile name or status message. "

In short, this means that while your message may be secure, WhatsApp stores user data on a private server, and the company can use that information for marketing purposes.

More importantly, the data stored on its servers can be provided to the government in the event of an "unconventional" event. In addition, hackers may enter WhatsApp servers and access users' phone numbers and account details.

WhatsApp's five best alternatives – apps that ensure your privacy and personal security

Users can choose to make the email disappear automatically by setting the time interval for automatic deletion, so as to protect personal privacy and prevent others from invading your mobile phone.



Evaluation: 4.8/5

2. Threema

Threema is committed to providing complete privacy. Your contact list and group information are only stored on your phone, not in the app. Once sent, the message will be deleted. In addition, you can use an 8-digit threema ID to contact others without using your own phone number to further protect your privacy. You can use a unique QR code to verify contacts.

Threema provides end-to-end encryption for all message types, including text, voice calls, shared files, and group chat. It can even encrypt your status messages, so no one can track what you post. Its messages can only be read by the sender and the destination recipient.

You can use threema safely in your browser. Like WhatsApp, its applications provide formatting, as well as sending locations and files. Unlike WhatsApp, its users can create polls and leave "like" feedback on individual messages. You can even hide specific chat records and password protect them.

Threema is headquartered in Switzerland, known for its privacy laws.



Evaluation: 4.6/5

The application has a default voice call end-to-end encryption feature that ensures that no one can listen to your phone. However, you need to turn on message encryption manually to prevent storage.



Evaluation: 4.5/5

4. Wire

Wire provides 1:1 and group screen sharing, and supports multimedia file sharing and audio filtering. Its app works on all major platforms and lets you sign in to your account synchronously from eight devices.

You can use bold and italics to format text and create lists in chat. In addition, you can optimize file size for easy sharing, and set timers to delete messages to increase privacy.



Evaluation: 4.4/5

5. Riot.IM

Riot supports VoIP and video calls, as well as end-to-end encryption of messages. Each user will receive a unique ID instead of a phone number, which helps protect your anonymity.

Riot is for open source software. Although it has its own robots, they also welcome developers to create their own robots. This enables users to interact with the software, making it more generic and secure. Its open source capabilities make riot more suitable for the developer team than for the enterprise group.

Riot has session rooms, and users have free access to any public chat room. In addition, it also provides a private session room that can be accessed through a link.

In addition, its desktop client has a clean and friendly interface, and its applications are available in seven languages and allow you to connect to other applications.



Evaluation: 4.2/5

If you want to make sure your private messages are private, you might want to abandon WhatsApp and use other alternatives. The applications recommended above are all known for their powerful encryption capabilities.

Want to learn more about privacy solutions? Learn how to protect your privacy on your iPhone, or how to use online services without Google.

A technology writer who is passionate about Internet privacy.