In today’s world, electronic communication is widespread. Gone are the days of calling someone, or writing a letter. Now we say, “Just shoot me a text or an email”. It is our number 1 source for communication. With this move to the digital space, there is also the increased risk of a compromise in the line. Just like wiretaps on phone lines, a tap may be placed to intercept your digital communication as well. What is worse, because of how easy it is to access the digital realm, anyone can perform an interception, not just the service provider or a government agency. So what can be done to keep our information private and secure?
Enter the realm of secure messaging. These are special applications meant to do exactly that, keep your messages secure. While there are many to choose from, most offer the same basic features. The idea is simple; the application encrypts all messages before they leave your phone. In transit, no one has the ability to decrypt those messages except the user receiving them. The one downside is that both parties involved in the communication must have the app installed in order to use it.
These types of applications also have another advantage. Have you ever called looking for a certain individual, just to have someone else pickup and pretend to be them, as a prank or way of screening the calls? One of the features secure messaging can provide is the ability to verify the recipient of your messages. This way you can ensure you are not passing your data on to a third party.
Let’s face it though, your grocery list is not really “secret” information that must be secure. (If someone wants to do my shopping for me feel free!) As such, most everyday users may not find a need for such an app. Businesses, and other various professionals, may on the other hand find such communication very important in relation to safeguarding trade secrets and client information when it needs to be shared. Always use a medium that matches the sensitivity of your information.