The Best Encrypted Messaging Apps You Should Use Today [Updated]

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We call it a platform because Signal is more than an app, which is simply the piece that sits on the Android or iOS device and which holds encryption keys. Thank you for sharing your perspective on this. Which of these can be used across multiple platforms? It lost points for not verifying contacts' identities or opening its code to independent review. Cyphr is another encrypted messaging that is easy to use and free for both Android and iOS users. Tom on September 7, at 4:

Keep it secret, keep it safe

Best secure mobile messaging apps

The main contenders in the game are really Signal and Telegram. WhatsApp gets a mention because it does feature levels of privacy and encryption by default. Best smartphones for entrepreneurs Android still tends to be the default platform for secure messaging apps, but iOS versions usually become available after a short delay. The issue of platform support is more important than it might first appear.

Even if you don't personally use an iPhone, for example, the fact that your favoured contacts do will render any app that doesn't support both platforms useless if the same app is needed at both ends.

Some apps integrate with third-party applications, for instance email clients. That can be important for businesses — can the app support the preferred communications software used by an organisation and will it work across desktop as well as mobile? Some can, some can't. It should be noted that Apple has significantly ramped up privacy and security in its devices of late. Controversially, American intelligence recently demanded that Apple undermine its own encryption as part of a terrorist shooting investigation.

But Apple said that it couldn't, even if it wanted to. Whatsapp CEO and cofounder Jan Koum grew up in communist Ukraine — where open dissent was not tolerated by the government. Leaving the country at 16 for Mountain View, California, in , it wasn't until when he and Whatsapp cofounder Brian Acton created an app designed to cut the number of missed calls they were getting.

This eventually mutated into Whatsapp, and by it had over million users. Today it's one of the most popular messaging apps out there. There were three principles integral to Koum, listed in this extensive profile from Wired.

The first two could be traced back to his Soviet roots, the good and the bad: The third was that it should be a gimmick-free user-friendly experience. Facebook is notoriously aggressive about collecting user data and Facebook has signposted its intention to target users with ads based on Whatsapp data. Where Whatsapp tends to be unavoidable at the moment is the sheer number of people on it, similarly to Facebook Messenger. While there are more secure messaging apps on the market, its popularity does sell it — and at least it does tout a degree of privacy even if it's Facebook that owns the data.

This means the keys used to scramble communication can't be captured through a server and no single key gives access to past messages. In April , the Signal protocol was rolled out as a mandatory upgrade to all WhatsApp users across all mobile platforms, an important moment for a technology that had spent years on the fringes.

At a stroke it also made Open Whisper Systems the most widely used encryption platform on earth. In February WhatsApp incrementally introduced two-factor authentication to all of its users as an optional added layer of security. But to ensure that your conversations stay private, you really need to get one of the secure mobile messaging apps on offer out there. These are the apps which offer end-to-end encryption — in other words, the chat is scrambled so only the sender and the receiver can understand what's being said.

Encryption means that even if someone should hack the messaging app's servers, or tap into your conversations thanks to the badly secured Wi-Fi at your local coffee shop, they still won't be able to interpret the messages. Here are the best Android apps with this feature.

Signal is widely regarded as the gold standard of encrypted messaging apps, not least because its encryption engine is open source and available for anyone to inspect. That doesn't make it any easier to hack, but it does mean there are a lot more pairs of eyes looking at the robustness of the encryption methods.

Besides the industry-leading encryption on offer here, the app itself is fairly plain and basic in terms of visuals and appearance. It does support group chats though, as well as the sending of files and photos in addition to text, so you're going to be pretty well covered no matter what your needs.

Signal can replace the default SMS app if you want it to, but basic SMS texts aren't encrypted — you and the person you're chatting with both need to have Signal installed for the encryption feature to function properly, otherwise Signal doesn't have enough control over both ends of the conversation.

The app also includes several other useful features on top of the tight security, such as video calling, and disappearing messages that vanish after a certain time period perfect for those conversations you don't want to stay on the record. Telegram is almost as well-respected as Signal is, although its encryption methods aren't open source and thus haven't been as well audited by third-party security experts.

What it does have in its favor is a slicker interface, if that's important to you. Another black mark against Telegram is that end-to-end encryption isn't enabled by default, so you need to make sure the Secret mode is activated before you can be sure that no one else is going to tap into your communications.

Other types of chat and file transfer are encrypted, but only for part of their journey to other parties. Those caveats aside, Telegram impresses in most areas, with features like chat backups and disappearing messages messages with expiry times attached.

I mean, these apps can be secured, but still — they are owned by a big bad corporations or are currently on the spotlight from FSB Russia. Signal is by far the gold standard. No way Whatsapp should be ever trusted while owned by Facebook. The rest of the apps are playing catch up to Signal. This is not correct. Skype has already implemented end-to-end encryption earlier this year for Skype-to-Skype connections.

Many thanks for your feedback and observation. That is correct, Skype has introduced end-to-end encryption earlier, I have updated the article. You just cannot trust Facebook, Google or any other similar company, they collect everything about you….

They did a good job. I think you missed out Workapps Chat. Does anyone have any experience with chatcrypt. I dont have any hacking experience so id appreciate any feedback about the safety of communication over that site. What a fantastic post! This is comprehensive and helpful list. With this app, one can securely send SMS ,Videos from their mobile devices.

You should give it a try! Available on Play and App store. Thank you for this article. Here in the Philippines, a deadly authoritarian government led by Rodrigo Duterte has teamed up with telcos from China using Huawei-Made routers to spy on his political enemies resulting in many deaths. Use the of end-to-end encryption should prevent that. This article is very much helpful and i hope this will be an useful information for the needed one.

Keep on updating these kinds of informative things… ios App Development Company. Hi Andra Zaharia, Blog post is nice , i have gone through it but if you are talking about best encrypted messaging apps then you should include BirdsBeep Chat app. It gives more security features as compare to Whatsapp or Viber. Best chat encryption ever developed https: Does not say what the hell the apps run on… desktop, iOS, android, fish poop… on to a site with forethought….

A comprehensive list, however, Telegram, WhatsApp and Viber can hardly be called completely secure. Great to see Threema here, but I would add Symphony https: Wire has messaging, voice calling, and video calling, all end-to-end encrypted. Wire is cross-platform, and you can use it on multiple devices.

Which of these can be used across multiple platforms? If there is a phone app to accompany it, that may be a bonus. You can find details about each app on their website. Most of them are cross-platform, so you should have no issues using them across multiple devices. Can you review Hypster-Heart? Thank you for the suggestion.

Have a great week! But sometimes I use Facebook Messenger for my private calls. Is it secure for me? Whatsapp is a good option indeed. Facebook Messenger has an option called Secret Conversations, but it has some limitations. Here are more details: Thanks for the recommendation, John! Ahhh, no problem thanks for the reply Andrea. Is the perfect solution for businesses. For online chatting firstly i choose the Whatsapp always. But recently i download imo chat software on my android device.

After reading you post; i know that whatsapp is safe for private calls or chat. But i want to know about the imo. Is imo safe for private calls? I think this link will help you get the information you need: Never heard of something called BBM? Do a little research before u publish something rubbish! Custom encryption can be developed even at higher grade with multi-layers of symmetric encryption up 99 layers using different algorithms. Hello there, are you working for Facebook?? How do you trust them?

How you can say that WhatUP is secure? Also today the pigs fly.. Thanks for your suggestion. Since when XMPP is an encryption protocols? Even in the wikipedia page the lake of end-to-end encryption is list as a weakness of xmpp https: Thank you for the feedback!

I completely agree that encryption is very serious business, so your input is more than welcome. Thanks for making the time for it!

No, those are conducted via your mobile data, so only the cost of the mobile data will be mentioned on the bill. I have been looking for secure communication solutions for a while now.

Another part of secure and private communication, is whether or not the meta data is encrypted. Very good point, Dan! Thank you for sharing your perspective on this. The only thing I had to go to individual websites to find, was the availability of device specific apps.

I voted for Telegram, It will be nice to see if they perform as expressed. It would definitely make things easier for other readers as well. Thanks for reading and for providing feedback on it! Hi We have been using safeswiss encryption.

These guys are a new Swiss based startup thier UI and end to end encryption including voice is very good. A few of us use Squealock squealock.

Why end-to-end encryption matters

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Slack: Where Work has been visited by 10K+ users in the past month. Secure messaging applications have been a cottage industry for desktop computers for years, usually for secure email or instant messaging, but the arrival of mobile platforms has given them the sort of kick that is leading many . One of the most often recommended of the secure instant messaging platforms is Signal from Open Whisper Systems. And it is recommended (including an endorsement from Edward Snowden) for good reasons. All messages are end-to-end encrypted, and the keys are stored only at the end points. Meaning the content of messages are never .