Encryption is the process of encoding information for preventing anyone other than the intended recipient from viewing it. It uses an algorithm known as a cipher to convert the information into a code that appears like random characters or symbols. This renders the information unreadable to anyone who does not have the decryption key. Same concept is applied to an encrypted communication app.
What Is An Encrypted Communication App?
An end-to-end encrypted communication app secures the messages being sent and makes sure the information is visible only to the end users – the sender and receiver.
Why Is It Important To Switch To An Encrypted Communication App?
As privacy has become an important consideration for organizations and individuals alike, securing the communications has gained leverage. Common reasons behind a leaked communication are:
- Monitoring of communications by the app providers
- Security breach by hackers/cyber criminals
A leaked communication text may cause damage to personal/organizational reputation by exposing personal/trade secrets. Additionally, communications may include the exchange of media files such as personal photos, videos, etc. Breach of these files may cause a serious threat to the parties involved.
How To Choose An Encrypted Communication App?
While it has been established that now is the time to switch to an encrypted communication app, a major question is how to choose a suitable app from the large pool of available communication apps.
In order to choose a suitable encrypted communication app, it is important to consider following points:
- Encrypted Metadata: In the context of messaging, metadata includes information such as the sender’s phone number, recipient’s phone number, date and time of the message. This information may seem trivial, but it can be used to map with whom and when the individual communicates. So, choose a communication app that encrypts the metadata along with the body of the message.
- In-App Encryption: Some communication apps do encrypt the messages being shared over the network but do not encrypt the messages stored on the device. This may cause a threat in case the device is stolen. Thus, it is important to confirm that all the messages are encrypted before being stored on the device prior to choosing a communication app.
- Online Backups: It is a common practice to back up the communications on cloud (Google Drive, etc.) to combat situations like failed/stolen devices. However, in this case, the messages are protected by a single layer of security (mostly a password). So, consider a communication app that offers an alternate solution to secure the backup.
- Security Analysis: In the case of closed source communication apps, it is practically impossible to review the code and see how well the encryption has been integrated. So, it is advisable to choose an open-source communication app that allows analysis of the security measures enforced by the app.
- Security Settings: Choose a communication app that has security-focused settings such as ‘Self-destructing messages’ that disappear after a pre-selected time, ‘Screen Security’ that prevents anyone from taking a screenshot of the conversation, etc.
For more information on encrypted communication apps, contact Centex Technologies at (254) 213 – 4740.