Mark Zuckerberg caught using WhatsApp rival Signal known for being 'more secure'

WHEN it comes to private messaging, it appears even Mark Zuckerberg doesn't trust Facebook's suite of apps to keep his data safe.

The Silicon Valley tech titan has been caught using the secure chat app Signal – a direct competitor to Facebook-owned WhatsApp.

Zuckerberg, 36, was one of more than 530million Facebook users whose data was recently found available on a website for hackers.

People's phone numbers, Facebook IDs, names and more were scraped from the social media platform and published online.

Facebook has tried to reassure users, saying that the data was leaked in 2019 and has since been secured.

That's of little reassurance to Zuckerberg, however, who as a result of the leak has been exposed as a user of one of Facebook's biggest competitors.

Cyber security expert Dave Walker recently highlighted that the Facebook boss's phone number was published as part of the data spill.

"Of the 533M people in the leak — the irony is that Mark Zuckerberg is regrettably included in the leak as well," Walker tweeted on April 4.

He redacted part of the leaked number, but said that it was associated with a Signal account.

Like WhatsApp, Signal offers data-secure messaging protected by end-to-end encryption.

"In another turn of events, Mark Zuckerberg also respects his own privacy, by using a chat app that has end-to-end encryption and isn’t owned by @facebook," Walker tweeted.

Signal is deemed to be the most secure digital communication method on the open market.

It gives users the option to automatically erase their own messages within a set period of time, from a week down to just five seconds.

Last year, the Sun reported that members of the UK Government, including the Prime Minister, had signed up to Signal.

Disappearing messages are favoured by senior Government and business figures alike because they help limit leaks.

Zuck's gaffe is likely to ruffle feathers at WhatsApp after droves of people ditched the chat app for rivals Signal and Telegram earlier this year.

It followed fresh terms laid out by WhatsApp in January that asked users to agree to let Facebook and its subsidiaries collect user data in the US.

Those who decline the terms will lose access to their accounts on May 15.

Following an online backlash, users began to migrate to other apps where they believed there data would be more secure.

More than 100,000 users installed Signal across the app stores of Apple and Google after the data sharing announcement.

WhatsApp – a quick history

Here’s what you need to know…

  • WhatsApp was created in 2009 by computer programmers Brian Acton and Jan Koum – former employees of Yahoo
  • It's one of the most popular messaging services in the world
  • Koum came up with the name WhatsApp because it sounded like "what's up"
  • After a number of tweaks the app was released with a messaging component in June 2009, with 250,000 active users
  • It was originally free but switched to a paid service to avoid growing too fast. Then in 2016, it became free again for all users
  • Facebook bought WhatsApp Inc in February 2014 for $19.3billion (£14.64bn)
  • The app is particularly popular because all messages are encrypted during transit, shutting out snoopers
  • As of 2020, WhatsApp has over 2billion users globally

It was briefly the world's top free app, according to data analytics firm Sensor Tower.

New installs of WhatsApp fell 11 per cent in the first seven days of 2021 compared with the week before.

However, Facebook's chat app still amounted to an estimated 10.5million downloads globally, Sensor Tower said.

WhatsApp said the changes to its terms regard how businesses using WhatsApp to chat with customers can share data with Facebook.

The new terms do not impact who can read messages sent between friends and family.

After the news broke of Zuckerberg’s supposed use of Signal, the company shared a link to the story on Twitter.

Signal tweeted: "With the May 15th WhatsApp Terms of Service acceptance deadline fast approaching, Mark leads by example."

In other news, a bizarre Facebook bug logged iPhone users off the app.

Beware the sinister Facebook scam that could cost you and your pals £400 each.

And a bungled WhatsApp privacy update has caused "millions of users to flee the Facebook-owned app".

We pay for your stories! Do you have a story for The Sun Online Tech & Science team? Email us at tech@the-sun.co.uk

Source: Read Full Article