Why Are People Leaving WhatsApp?

12 January 2021, Tuesday

When we think of communicating with someone today, we mostly think of sending them a text message or a voice note on WhatsApp. And some other people who are least bothered about their privacy online, think of Facebook Messenger. But not all these users know what’s happening with the messages they exchange on these platforms. Recently, Facebook-owned WhatsApp updated its privacy policy, prompting several users to look for alternative platforms.
Signal has emerged as one of the top alternatives to WhatsApp recently.

Signal Messenger was founded by Moxie Marlinspike and Brian Acton in 2018. Apparently, Acton is also the co-founder of WhatsApp. He left the Facebook-owned company three years after the social network bought it for $19 billion.

Signal Foundation’s aim to provide its users an encrypted messaging app. The application is open source, and in fact, WhatsApp currently uses Signal’s end-to-end encryption protocol.

How is it different from WhatsApp?

Messages sent through Signal are said to be encrypted, meaning the platform cannot access private messages or media, or store them on their server.

While WhatsApp also provides end-to-end encryption for messages, it can access other private information like IP address, group details and status. The company also does not encrypt messages stored on the cloud. Even Telegram, another rival messaging app, is said to store user's contact number and user ID.

However, if the devices are offline, Signal will store certain messages on its server until messages are delivered.

Signal also allows setting a registration lock PIN, which helps users protect private profile information. This number can also be used to retrieve profile, settings, contacts if a user loses the device or switches to a new one.

Another plus point is that Signal isn't owned by a big technology firm, unlike WhatsApp.

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