“Telegram is insecure and can deliver information to Russia”: the warning of the CEO of WhatsApp

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The ongoing battle between two of the most popular messaging apps, WhatsApp and Telegram, continues to be debated. The CEO of WhatsApp, Will Cathcart, fired: “If you think Telegram It’s safe, maybe they should figure out the truth firstespecially if they are going to use it for private purposes: the app can share sensitive information required by any government, especially the Kremlin“, shot on Twitter from a Wired article.

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His statements come just months after Telegram CEO Pavel Durov said it was “not safe to use WhatsApp” and strongly advised against its use.

WhatsApp and Telegram are two of the most popular messaging apps available today. Both offer features like messaging, voice and video calls, group chats and file sharing. However, there are some key differences between the two that can affect your choice of app, and data privacy issue is one of them.

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Cathcart seized on an article from Wired magazine to launch an attack on Telegram, noting that if users plan to use the app for anything private, they “should first figure out the truth about its security.”

Cathcart noted that unlike WhatsApp, Telegram doesn’t offer this feature for groups. Whatsapp offers end-to-end encryption (E2E, “from end to end”) by default. “Instead, Telegram only provides end-to-end encryption in secret chats,” she said.

Telegram defended its lack of encryption for Groups, saying the difficulty involves backing up it is the reason behind the function.

What encryption is really like in Telegram

Telegram maintains end-to-end encryption, but governments can request information through Google Drive.  photo by AFP

Telegram maintains end-to-end encryption, but governments can request information through Google Drive. photo by AFP

However, the issue is more complex. Telegram accused Whatsapp of making a false claim about its E2EE encryption, saying it “is a trick”. According to Telegram, “if your conversation on your Whatsapp partner is using Backup to Google Drive, Google has access to those messages. And therefore, any government that requests them from Google.

Therefore, E2E encryption is enabled on WhatsApp by default, but it is immediately disabled. And there is no way to know if your friends are they using those backups or not.

The lack of encryption on Telegram has been under criticism for several years. And the recent Wired article commented by Cathcart himself highlights the dangers of this lack of encryption.

The article states that Telegram has the ability to share almost any sensitive information required by a government. “Especially the Russian informants or the Kremlin”, he assures, without mentioning specific cases.

It is worth mentioning that this conflict between WhatsApp and Telegram has intensified due to the Russian-Ukrainian war. Cathcart also claimed that Telegram put people in harm’s way, and Wired’s report reveals that early in the war it was possible to spoof Telegram’s Locations API to identify any user within a 2-mile radius if they had recently turned on your location .

Telegram’s privacy policy states that they have never handed over user data to governments, but news reports suggest otherwise.

“Stay away from WhatsApp”, the bomb that sparked the war between messengers

Pavel Durov, founder of Telegram.  Reuters photo

Pavel Durov, founder of Telegram. Reuters photo

Pavel Durov had been very tough on WhatsApp in October last year. At the time, the founder of Telegram had urged users to use “any messaging application, except WhatsApp”. As he explained, it’s to prevent the phone from being hacked, as it’s “not secure.”

“Cybercriminals could have full access to all about the phones of WhatsApp users”, he wrote on Telegram.

“Every year we hear about a problem in WhatsApp that puts everything on its users’ devices at risk… It doesn’t matter if you are the richest person in the world, if you have WhatsApp installed on your phone, all your data from all applications on your device are accessible,” he wrote on his chat platform.

The Russian-born tech billionaire, who lives in self-imposed exile from his home country, said the security flaws are “backdoors planted” to allow governments, law enforcement and hackers to circumvent encryption and other security measures.

A “backdoor” is a method of bypassing a security standard that is typically exploited by attackers.

Durov had previously stated that “WhatsApp will never be secureunless substantial changes are made to its operation.

“You can use any messaging app you want, but stay away from WhatsApp – it used to be a messaging tool now. surveillance for 13 years“He closed his message.

Source: Clarin

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