Security issues with Messaging apps
Over the last couple of years, instant messaging apps have become increasingly popular. They were even more necessary during the pandemic to keep us all connected. Now a majority of people rely on these applications to contact their friends, family, and colleagues, however, not everyone knows that there are some pretty serious security issues if you use them.
Developers have cautioned against instant messaging apps as they make it easy for your private information to be exposed, which can also be used for fraudulent purposes. Most applications have parts of their code that are public, meaning that they could easily be modified. It can allow hackers to send messages on someone else’s behalf and gain personal information.
Encryption issues WhatsApp is one of the most popular instant messaging apps available and it has recently been accused of transmitting address books and personal information unencrypted to the app server. This means that some private information including the ID of the account is available to third parties. Even more worryingly there have been apps created such as WhatsApp Sniffer to get access to instant messaging conversations of other users. This could have some major privacy issues and could lead to fraudulent activity.
Facebook Chat, Windows Live Messenger, and Yahoo Messenger are all applications that are known as unsafe. Encryption is not used to protect the log-in from these apps, meaning the password of a user can be obtained easily by someone else. The conversations in these applications are also not protected very well, so it could be easy for someone to get a hold of private messages.
How can you be safe on instant messaging apps?
The best thing you can do is do research into the security measure that the differentapps use to decide which one will work best for you. Some applications put more of an emphasis on the protection of sensitive data, which means that your personal information is safer. Data encryption is the absolute minimum an app should be during to be secure. Skype, AOL, and Google Talk are all highly secure applications, with security measures that are to a much higher standard than other apps.
Make sure the wifi you are using is secure
Although it is important that the application you are using to instant message is secure, it is also important that you ensure your wifi is too. Open networks, which are usually found in places such as cafes, restaurants, and airports are not very secure and easy to hack and breakthrough. When you are participating in any instant messaging or using an instant messaging application to send any information or media, ensure that you are on a closed, password-protected network.
Instant messaging is very useful and can be used to keep us connected to our friends and family, however, we need to ensure we are all being safe and avoiding any negative consequences from using it. Choose the applications you are using carefully and be smart about what you share on these apps.