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Everything You Need To Know About The New Signal App

From oblivion to the limelight. What the new Signal App is all about.

Over the years 'WhatsApp' has become an essential and undeniable part of our social life and possibly existence. Introduced way back in 2009, the app slowly and gradually became one of the most used messaging apps across the globe. So, what has now changed that has forced people to reconsider using this seemingly simple and easy-to-use app. The primary issue here has been the ‘New Privacy Policy’ of WhatsApp that has sparked fears of privacy breach and intrusion among the users. The direct result of this development has been the sudden surge in the popularity of rival messaging apps such as Telegram and Signal to name a few. Though Telegram has been around for some time now, Signal has shot into prominence with the app becoming the most searched and downloaded in the 'free apps category' on the Google Play Store not only in India but in countries such as Germany, France and Hong Kong to name a few. The rise of popularity and awareness about the app from a rather small group of activists, whistleblowers like Edward Snowden and security experts to the larger public, indicates a rise in awareness among the people towards their privacy and security.

Nevertheless, there are some key aspects pertaining to the entire issue that require some discussion.

The Privacy Policy

As mentioned before, the new privacy policy introduced by WhatsApp sparked fears of breach and intrusion of both data and privacy. WhatsApp has clarified that the new privacy policy does not entail any apparent breach or intrusion as such and will only share the user data with its parent company Facebook. The concern also seems to stem from the not so stellar record of Facebook when it comes to user privacy. The privacy policy coupled with the growing political unrest and protests all over the world has also made the users rethink about their association and use of WhatsApp as a primary tool for communication.

Elon Musk, Government and Signal

Elon Musk on January 7 tweeted "Use Signal" thereby increasing the curiosity among people for the messaging app and with the users’ concerns and apprehensions about any breach of privacy and data thrown into the mix, Signal has been gaining popularity ever since with the app becoming the talk of the town. The rise of concerns regarding New Privacy Policy is due to the involvement of its parent company in similar scandals some time back. As this report suggests, not all the news circulating regarding the new policy is true or correct. The relative seriousness of the matter can also be understood by the fact that the Indian Government and Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, in particular, has been compelled to look into the matter and the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) writing to the government and asking for some government action to be taken in this regard.

What Is Signal App?

Signal, a relatively obscure app (at least for the masses), was launched in 2013 by a group of pro-privacy activists. The app through grants and donations from private investors, such as WhatsApp co-founder Brian Acton donating $50 million has risen up in popularity almost overnight. Signal is essentially a messaging and calling app, touted as possibly the most privacy-centric app out there in the market. It requires only the phone number of the individual wishing to join the app and nothing more. With end to end encryption, disappearing messages, and seemingly secure encryption protocol also used by other messaging apps and other safeguards such as Sealed Sender, Signal ensures complete privacy to the users with no one being able to read the messages, even the app itself. With the controversy regarding the New Privacy Policy gathering momentum, Signal has seen a meteoric rise in its popularity. The 'take it or leave it' tone of the message for the users has also propelled this shift to seemingly more secure and private applications. Since Signal is a not for profit organisation and not part of a big commercial entity like WhatsApp it does not have any incentive to track its users.

Should I switch from Whatsapp to Signal?

Now the question that arises is whether to actually make the switch or not, WhatsApp has been the primary medium and choice of almost everyone when it comes to interpersonal communication owing to its simplicity and plethora of cosmetic and functional features. Another important aspect here lies in creating awareness among people about issues such as privacy, data breach etc. Till the time when the masses are made aware of these issues, the use of highly secure and private apps like Signal will remain restricted to a small and specific section of the public.

With a lot of people considering moving to different apps for the purpose of formal and informal, personal and professional communication, it is high time that WhatsApp takes cognizance of these developments and take appropriate action(s). Though apps like Signal lack the cosmetic frills of larger and corporate-backed apps like WhatsApp, by ensuring complete privacy and security to the user.

Trends

Everything You Need To Know About The New Signal App

From oblivion to the limelight. What the new Signal App is all about.

Over the years 'WhatsApp' has become an essential and undeniable part of our social life and possibly existence. Introduced way back in 2009, the app slowly and gradually became one of the most used messaging apps across the globe. So, what has now changed that has forced people to reconsider using this seemingly simple and easy-to-use app. The primary issue here has been the ‘New Privacy Policy’ of WhatsApp that has sparked fears of privacy breach and intrusion among the users. The direct result of this development has been the sudden surge in the popularity of rival messaging apps such as Telegram and Signal to name a few. Though Telegram has been around for some time now, Signal has shot into prominence with the app becoming the most searched and downloaded in the 'free apps category' on the Google Play Store not only in India but in countries such as Germany, France and Hong Kong to name a few. The rise of popularity and awareness about the app from a rather small group of activists, whistleblowers like Edward Snowden and security experts to the larger public, indicates a rise in awareness among the people towards their privacy and security.

Nevertheless, there are some key aspects pertaining to the entire issue that require some discussion.

The Privacy Policy

As mentioned before, the new privacy policy introduced by WhatsApp sparked fears of breach and intrusion of both data and privacy. WhatsApp has clarified that the new privacy policy does not entail any apparent breach or intrusion as such and will only share the user data with its parent company Facebook. The concern also seems to stem from the not so stellar record of Facebook when it comes to user privacy. The privacy policy coupled with the growing political unrest and protests all over the world has also made the users rethink about their association and use of WhatsApp as a primary tool for communication.

Elon Musk, Government and Signal

Elon Musk on January 7 tweeted "Use Signal" thereby increasing the curiosity among people for the messaging app and with the users’ concerns and apprehensions about any breach of privacy and data thrown into the mix, Signal has been gaining popularity ever since with the app becoming the talk of the town. The rise of concerns regarding New Privacy Policy is due to the involvement of its parent company in similar scandals some time back. As this report suggests, not all the news circulating regarding the new policy is true or correct. The relative seriousness of the matter can also be understood by the fact that the Indian Government and Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, in particular, has been compelled to look into the matter and the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) writing to the government and asking for some government action to be taken in this regard.

What Is Signal App?

Signal, a relatively obscure app (at least for the masses), was launched in 2013 by a group of pro-privacy activists. The app through grants and donations from private investors, such as WhatsApp co-founder Brian Acton donating $50 million has risen up in popularity almost overnight. Signal is essentially a messaging and calling app, touted as possibly the most privacy-centric app out there in the market. It requires only the phone number of the individual wishing to join the app and nothing more. With end to end encryption, disappearing messages, and seemingly secure encryption protocol also used by other messaging apps and other safeguards such as Sealed Sender, Signal ensures complete privacy to the users with no one being able to read the messages, even the app itself. With the controversy regarding the New Privacy Policy gathering momentum, Signal has seen a meteoric rise in its popularity. The 'take it or leave it' tone of the message for the users has also propelled this shift to seemingly more secure and private applications. Since Signal is a not for profit organisation and not part of a big commercial entity like WhatsApp it does not have any incentive to track its users.

Should I switch from Whatsapp to Signal?

Now the question that arises is whether to actually make the switch or not, WhatsApp has been the primary medium and choice of almost everyone when it comes to interpersonal communication owing to its simplicity and plethora of cosmetic and functional features. Another important aspect here lies in creating awareness among people about issues such as privacy, data breach etc. Till the time when the masses are made aware of these issues, the use of highly secure and private apps like Signal will remain restricted to a small and specific section of the public.

With a lot of people considering moving to different apps for the purpose of formal and informal, personal and professional communication, it is high time that WhatsApp takes cognizance of these developments and take appropriate action(s). Though apps like Signal lack the cosmetic frills of larger and corporate-backed apps like WhatsApp, by ensuring complete privacy and security to the user.

Trends

Everything You Need To Know About The New Signal App

From oblivion to the limelight. What the new Signal App is all about.

Over the years 'WhatsApp' has become an essential and undeniable part of our social life and possibly existence. Introduced way back in 2009, the app slowly and gradually became one of the most used messaging apps across the globe. So, what has now changed that has forced people to reconsider using this seemingly simple and easy-to-use app. The primary issue here has been the ‘New Privacy Policy’ of WhatsApp that has sparked fears of privacy breach and intrusion among the users. The direct result of this development has been the sudden surge in the popularity of rival messaging apps such as Telegram and Signal to name a few. Though Telegram has been around for some time now, Signal has shot into prominence with the app becoming the most searched and downloaded in the 'free apps category' on the Google Play Store not only in India but in countries such as Germany, France and Hong Kong to name a few. The rise of popularity and awareness about the app from a rather small group of activists, whistleblowers like Edward Snowden and security experts to the larger public, indicates a rise in awareness among the people towards their privacy and security.

Nevertheless, there are some key aspects pertaining to the entire issue that require some discussion.

The Privacy Policy

As mentioned before, the new privacy policy introduced by WhatsApp sparked fears of breach and intrusion of both data and privacy. WhatsApp has clarified that the new privacy policy does not entail any apparent breach or intrusion as such and will only share the user data with its parent company Facebook. The concern also seems to stem from the not so stellar record of Facebook when it comes to user privacy. The privacy policy coupled with the growing political unrest and protests all over the world has also made the users rethink about their association and use of WhatsApp as a primary tool for communication.

Elon Musk, Government and Signal

Elon Musk on January 7 tweeted "Use Signal" thereby increasing the curiosity among people for the messaging app and with the users’ concerns and apprehensions about any breach of privacy and data thrown into the mix, Signal has been gaining popularity ever since with the app becoming the talk of the town. The rise of concerns regarding New Privacy Policy is due to the involvement of its parent company in similar scandals some time back. As this report suggests, not all the news circulating regarding the new policy is true or correct. The relative seriousness of the matter can also be understood by the fact that the Indian Government and Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, in particular, has been compelled to look into the matter and the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) writing to the government and asking for some government action to be taken in this regard.

What Is Signal App?

Signal, a relatively obscure app (at least for the masses), was launched in 2013 by a group of pro-privacy activists. The app through grants and donations from private investors, such as WhatsApp co-founder Brian Acton donating $50 million has risen up in popularity almost overnight. Signal is essentially a messaging and calling app, touted as possibly the most privacy-centric app out there in the market. It requires only the phone number of the individual wishing to join the app and nothing more. With end to end encryption, disappearing messages, and seemingly secure encryption protocol also used by other messaging apps and other safeguards such as Sealed Sender, Signal ensures complete privacy to the users with no one being able to read the messages, even the app itself. With the controversy regarding the New Privacy Policy gathering momentum, Signal has seen a meteoric rise in its popularity. The 'take it or leave it' tone of the message for the users has also propelled this shift to seemingly more secure and private applications. Since Signal is a not for profit organisation and not part of a big commercial entity like WhatsApp it does not have any incentive to track its users.

Should I switch from Whatsapp to Signal?

Now the question that arises is whether to actually make the switch or not, WhatsApp has been the primary medium and choice of almost everyone when it comes to interpersonal communication owing to its simplicity and plethora of cosmetic and functional features. Another important aspect here lies in creating awareness among people about issues such as privacy, data breach etc. Till the time when the masses are made aware of these issues, the use of highly secure and private apps like Signal will remain restricted to a small and specific section of the public.

With a lot of people considering moving to different apps for the purpose of formal and informal, personal and professional communication, it is high time that WhatsApp takes cognizance of these developments and take appropriate action(s). Though apps like Signal lack the cosmetic frills of larger and corporate-backed apps like WhatsApp, by ensuring complete privacy and security to the user.

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