Every time you send a message, a photo or a video using a mobile messaging app, you press the send button with the confidence that your sent item reaches your recipient securely — that is, no third party gets hold of it. And every time you start a call or a video call, you are confident that nobody else is monitoring your conversation. In a perfect world that may be possible, but this is a world riddled with elicit surveillance.

Thankfully, post-Snowden mobile communication apps are comparably big when it comes security, especially with users wary about security and conscious about privacy. But that’s not to say that they are totally not impregnable. So the question is really not about which among the messaging apps these days are unbreachable, but rather which among them is on the high track when it comes to security?

Given the option between WhatsApp and Viber, check out this Secure Messaging Scorecard from the Electronic Frontier Foundation updated as of 10 August 2016, and you be the judge.

Viber



  • Encrypted in transit? – Yes
  • Encrypted so the provider can’t read it? – No
  • Can you verify contacts’ identities? – No
  • Are past comms secure if your keys are stolen? – No
  • Is the code open to independent review? – No
  • Is security design properly documented? – No
  • Has there been any recent code audit? – Yes

WhatsApp

  • Encrypted in transit? – Yes
  • Encrypted so the provider can’t read it? – Yes
  • Can you verify contacts’ identities? – Yes
  • Are past comms secure if your keys are stolen? – Yes
  • Is the code open to independent review? – No
  • Is security design properly documented? – Yes
  • Has there been any recent code audit? – Yes

Looks like we got a winner! Viber definitely has a long way to go, but its developer has implemented end-to-end encryption just a few months ago following WhatsApp, allowing user devices to establish secure communications channel directly and making it impossible for anyone else to see the encrypted data.

For complete comparison of Viber’s and WhatsApp’s features, check out this comparison.

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