When it comes to default social media messaging apps, did you know that WhatsApp isn’t the only option out there? Yes! This might come as a surprise to the hundreds of millions of folks that have been using WhatsApp for what seems like their entire lives, but there are alternatives out there. Hold on, why do I need an alternative you might ask? WhatsApp works great and all of my contacts have been on there for years, you say! It turns out that there are several ways to justify the need for a WhatsApp alternative which you might be fascinated by in the next sections. The fact is that WhatsApp has several weaknesses that we need to address. In fact, these are weaknesses that have even made it to the courts. So, finding a WhatsApp alternative is no laughing matter, because we live in a time where we have to start considering our personal online privacy and cybersecurity! This starts with opting for alternatives to commercial offerings, among which is the dominating force known as WhatsApp.
What is WhatsApp?
It’s tough to imagine a world without having the ability to swipe open your smartphone or other devices and start chatting away with many people at once. Decades ago, simple chat programs like AOL, Mirc, ICQ, and others offered us basic services that allowed us to chat online. Today, everything is on the high-speed cloud. Also today, most of us have high-speed internet at home that is also wireless. Even still, most of us have access to mobile data at 4G or 5G speeds! Combine all of that with a dominant chat application such as WhatsApp and you have communication everywhere at any time.
WhatsApp is the most popular chat app today, bar none. In regions such as Europe, Russia, South America, and Africa it is the leading chat app, no question. The app has a dizzying 1.5 billion users making it more popular than in some countries, even. However, WhatsApp has changed a lot since the beginning. Since it was purchased by Facebook (now Meta Platforms Inc.) the application has run into several privacy and cybersecurity issues that have had users flocking to alternative apps. Other than the fact that the app is massively commercialized nowadays, another issue is that people are simply more discerning and cautious around their privacy and cybersecurity nowadays. For this reason, a lot of us are looking for more trusted, more grassroots companies that are true and honest and their apps do what it says on the box!
Try a Safer Alternative to WhatsApp!
Almost two billion people are familiar with WhatsApp today. It is simply one of the most used apps out there at any given moment. This, in turn, opens the door for massive issues regarding how user data is collected and processed (privacy) as well as issues surrounding encryption and the safety of transmission (cybersecurity). Today, a few companies dominate the social media and chat space. These are Google and Meta, largely. Most of the apps you use daily come from two giant companies with hundreds of thousands of staff and multiple billions in profit every year. The issue is that, in such a large and chaotic environment, large companies tend to lose track of their user loyalty and sometimes even the security of their products. Do you use the Google Search engine? Do you use Gmail? Do you use Instagram? Exactly.
At this point, we want to stress the importance of trying out some alternatives to mega-platforms such as WhatsApp. Who knows, you might be more private, and secure and enjoy the user experience more than ever! So, let’s get into it.
There are a few alternatives out there today that you can download right now, and more of them seem to crop up by the day as the alternatives grow. Here are a few options at the moment;
It is important to note that not all of the apps in this list are the same as each other. For instance, Surespot seems to be the safest alternative of them all because it focuses on fantastic 256-bit AES-GCM encryption for your safety. You can also use the app completely anonymously. Next, there is the famous Signal app. Millions of people have migrated to Signal ever since ex-Facebook’s data practices scandals made the news. This is also a highly encrypted app but you will need to input your phone number to make it work, unlike Surespot. Onto the next one, which is Wire. Wire claims to be the safest chat app on the market and has all the bells and whistles that WhatsApp offers, too. One drawback is that the app keeps some behavior logs. How about Threema and Telegram, then? Well, Threema focuses on privacy and anonymity. They present 6 guarantees on their site that their users will be completely anonymous and excellently encrypted. The app does not keep behavior logs, nor does it ask for your contact list. Unfortunately, it is limited to specific operating systems. Finally, we have Telegram. It already has 200 million active users all over the world, similar to Signal. In fact, Signal and Telegram are direct competitors. Telegram is safe and very fast. What is more, the app offers $300,000 to the person that can hack into their encryption. On the other hand, privacy does not do so well on Telegram so you could use it for simple communication.
Finally, the choice is yours. It would be a good idea to read some in-depth reviews about these alternatives. Rest assured, though, that the quality of service you get in terms of privacy and cybersecurity will be an upgrade from mass market choices like WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, WeChat, and others. Remember some common sense laws; do not overshare private data about yourself via chat, and use a Virtual Private Network on your connection to further anonymize and encrypt yourself from any dangers and risks.
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