Will YOU Stop using WhatsApp?

WHATSAPP USER EXODUS

Over the past few days,a huge number of WhatsApp users have been shifting to another messaging platform – SIGNAL.

So why are users making the shift?

Well it has to do with WhatsApp’s new privacy policy

8 February 2021 is the last date for WhatsApp users to accept the company’s new Privacy policy.

THE NEW PRIVACY UPDATE

The policy has people worried but how much Private data WhatsApp collects and how it will be using that data.  

For those choosing not to continue with WhatsApp – the SIGNAL Messaging app seems the clear choice.

WHATSAPP VS SIGNAL

So why SIGNAL? – well where WhatsApp collects a whole lot of private data from it’s users – SIGNAL collects nothing. The only data SIGNAL collects is a users phone number and it makes no attempt to link that to the user’s identity.

Visually Simplified: WhatsApp vs Signal
Visually Simplified: Whats up with WhatsApp’s Privacy update?

So WhatsApp vs. Signal – is SIGNAL better than WhatsApp? Well the answer to that is what are you looking for in a messaging platform. If its Privacy – then YES! SIGNAL is more secure than WhatsApp.

While WhatsApp does promise to end to end encrypt messages between users and recipients, chats backed up to the cloud and the metadata used to carry communication between two end points is not encrypted. Arjun Sha does a really good job in comparing the two platforms as well another messaging platform – TELEGRAM in this article

It is comforting to know that Signal is owned by a nonprofit organization – The Signal Foundation which was launched by Brian Acton, co-founder of Whatsapp, who eventually left the company because of disagreements with Facebook over data privacy and business model.

SIGNAL – THE NOT FOR PROFIT MESSAGING APP

Signal promises to be free of advertisements and free to use! It is supported only by grants and donations and their website lists a number of ways users can donate to them. These include the following (this is from their site):

  1. Spread the word
    Signal is a collaborative open source project and does not have a dedicated PR department. Signal relies on our users to help explain the benefits of using their software.
  2. Help translate
    Update translations so your friends and family feel right at home when messaging or calling from Signal. 
  3. Contribute code
    If you have Android or iOS development experience, please consider helping us tackle some of the open issues in our GitHub repositories.
  4. Upgrade your online shopping
    Amazon will donate .5% of your purchases to Signal. Use this link to sign up and support Signal Technology Foundation. When you shop at Amazon use smile.amazon.com instead of amazon.com. That’s it.
  5. Contribute money
    Donate here. Your donation helps pay for the servers, bandwidth, and continued development of an app that is used by millions of people every day for secure, free, and instantaneous communication anywhere in the world. 

So – Are you shifting?

Note: On 15 January, WhatsApp said it was postponing the update to its privacy policy following concerns and calls from users to switch to other encrypted apps like Signal and Telegram.

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