So, Facebook’s acquisition of WhatsApp is following a much-predictable line of action. Latest change in privacy terms has opened another gateway of personal data from WhatsApp to Facebook. Essentially, your details would now be shared with Facebook as a way to help Facebook improve marketing services to the businesses.
While privacy concerns have always been a challenge when it comes to WhatsApp. Last week’s change in terms of service and privacy terms has renewed discussions about using an alternative messaging app that focuses on user privacy, rather than on business revenues.
Elon Musk’s last night tweet – ‘Use Signal’, has given the users a much sought after direction to look for a messaging app that lays primary stress on user privacy. Signal’s antecedents are solid, and it is a leader in the technology space that works on privacy and encryption methodology. So, what would you use Signal or why would Elon Musk suggest using Signal? There are multiple reasons for touting Signal as an efficient alternative to WhatsApp. A few of them are listed herein.
Signal is owned by the Signal Messenger LLC, and it runs under the Signal foundation, a non-profit organization. It’s much like Firefox, a browser that is developed and managed by Mozilla, a non-profit. The Signal foundation has a ‘privacy-first’ approach, and one that is contrary to Facebook’s approach in handling WhatsApp traffic and users. Signal’s development happens through donations and support from the user community. So, until it stays under the non-profit organization, we are saved from the big tech companies’ prowess to private user data.
Signal’s encryption algorithms are strong, and anything to everything on the platform is encrypted end-to-end. The app also allows you to post messages that disappear after a defined interval of time, much like the fleets on twitter and disappearing messages on WhatsApp. Signal also has the ability to send one-time viewable messages and media on the platform. This feature is unique to Signal, because WhatsApp has not implemented it yet.
Another strong aspect of Signal app is the fact that Signal stores chat backups on your device,. This is different from how WhatsApp handles user backups. WhatsApp posts user data backups on the Google drive or the cloud.
Elon Musk’s single tweet has actually brought down the user-verification on the Signal platform as more and more people try to join the platform, leading to unprecedented traffic on Signal. In case you are looking to migrate over to Signal, please do so here. Is it time to reclaim your online identity and private data from WhatsApp and move on to Signal for private and robust messaging? Let us see how the online messaging shapes up in 2021.
Helen is a geeky nerd who seeks to find and fix tech gaps in the latest gadgets. She is always on the lookout for resolving technical queries of users, and is an avid writer on technical subjects.