Encryption

Signal launches encrypted video calling for everyone

Signal launches encrypted video calling for everyone

Open Whisper Systems has announced that its previously launched encrypted video calling feature in Signal has been taken out of beta and is now available for all users to enjoy. The feature first arrived as a beta that users had to opt-in to use; now it is available to anyone using the most recent version of the iOS or Android app, making it easy to make end-to-end encrypted video calls.

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Viber launches secret chats to go beyond encryption

Viber launches secret chats to go beyond encryption

We've seen a lot of chat services rolling out end-to-end encryption lately (or, in Facebook Messenger's backwards world, optional end-to-end encryption), but now Viber wants to take that one step further. Viber already launched end-to-end encryption for all conversations held over its service a few months back, but starting today, you can host "secret chats" for a little extra security.

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Signal encrypted chat app adds video calls, iOS users beware

Signal encrypted chat app adds video calls, iOS users beware

At the height of the great Snowden whistleblowing phase of history, highly secure and encrypted messaging services became en vogue. While some of that has died down, a notable few like Signal remain. Developed by Open Whisper Systems, which also developers the Signal protocol now used by Whatsapp for encryption, the Signal app started out as a simple, text-based chat app. Now it is on the cusp of its next evolution, adding that oh so popular video chatting capability, though still in beta format.

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Lavabit, the encrypted email once used by Snowden, returns to operation

Lavabit, the encrypted email once used by Snowden, returns to operation

Back in 2013, when Edward Snowden blew the whistle on the US government's mass surveillance programs, it was discovered that his preferred email provider was the encrypted service called Lavabit. As the government then tried to get its hands on the former NSA contractor, the federal authorities demanded Lavabit turn over its SSL encryption key. Instead, founder Ladar Levison shut the entire service down, as cooperating meant giving the government access to the private data of all of its 410,000 users.

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Signal’s private chat app uses Google to stay uncensored

Signal’s private chat app uses Google to stay uncensored

Signal, the encrypted messaging app endorsed by whistleblower Edward Snowden, just received rather significant update. No, we’re not referring to the new stickers and doodling functionality. Those are just a front for the real meat of the update. In almost a similar fashion, Signal now uses a “front”, specifically a domain front utilizing Google.com, in order to circumvent current and future government censorship that would block an app that is reported to be in popular use among activists, advocates, and even dissidents.

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Trump’s CIA chief pick makes encrypted chat popular again

Trump’s CIA chief pick makes encrypted chat popular again

Donald Trump's impending presidency and Pompeo pick for CIA has sent downloads of secure encryption chat apps skyrocketing. According to the makers of the encrypted messaging app Signal, they've had a 400 percent growth increase since election day this month. Moxie Marlinspike, co-founder of OWS, makers of Signal, they've "never really seen any single event that's resulted in this kind of sustained, day-over-day interest." According to Marlinspike, this may be because of fears that Trump's impending control of "the least accountable surveillance apparatus in the history of the world."

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Google Pixel encryption promised to be stronger, faster

Google Pixel encryption promised to be stronger, faster

One of the biggest criticisms of Google’s open mobile platform is security. For some, especially those looking from the iOS camp, Android’s security framework is a joke. That’s not to say that Google hasn’t been working on improving the situation significantly. Especially in its first ever “by Google” smartphone, the Pixel. Now Google briefly explains some of the added security measures implemented for the device, specifically on the rather contentious topic of encryption.

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Facebook Messenger now offers end-to-end encryption to all users

Facebook Messenger now offers end-to-end encryption to all users

Earlier this year, Facebook began testing end-to-end encryption in Messenger through a new feature called Secret Conversations. Initially the feature was only available to a select number of users, but that's been changing over the past few weeks, with Facebook rolling Secret Conversations out to every Messenger user - all 900 million of them.

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Apple promises fix for iOS 10’s iTunes backup security flaw

Apple promises fix for iOS 10’s iTunes backup security flaw

Security forensics company Elcomsoft revealed last week that encrypted iOS backups created in iTunes have been made far less secure with the recent release of iOS 10. While an unintentional flaw, the new password protected backups offer an "alternative password verification mechanism" that allows them to fall victim to brute force hacks much more quickly and easily than with previous iOS versions. Fortunately Apple acknowledged the issue, and says a fix is on the way with "an upcoming security update."

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Chrome to begin flagging all websites not using HTTPS

Chrome to begin flagging all websites not using HTTPS

Google aims to step up its campaign against an unencrypted internet by alerting users to any websites that still aren't using HTTPS connections. The search giant has said that when the next version of Chrome launches, it will begin displaying a new warning on any login pages that aren't encrypted, or in other words using HTTP. This is scheduled to start in January 2017 with the rollout of Chrome 56.

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WhatsApp still isn’t as secure as you might think

WhatsApp still isn’t as secure as you might think

Facebook's acquisition of WhatsApp in early 2014 raised all sorts of red flags for security and privacy interest groups. Facebook, then and to some extent now, isn't exactly the epitome of those two values. Over time, WhatsApp has tried to assuage fears by implementing features such as end-to-end encryption. Apparently, that may be futile after all. Forensic scientist Jonathan Zdziarski revealed that, while the app does encrypt the messages it stores, it doesn't actually completely delete them and its backups still leave users open to spying or law enforcement.

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WhatsApp blocked once more in Brazil for failing to hand over user data

WhatsApp blocked once more in Brazil for failing to hand over user data

One of the wonderful things about end-to-end encryption in messaging apps is, as long as it's implemented correctly, nobody but you or the person you're chatting with should be able to see those messages. Unfortunately for WhatsApp, judges in Brazil don't seem to understand how that works. Yes, Brazil's at it again, as the office of Judge Daniela Barbosa Assunção de Souza in Rio De Janerio has ordered five carriers to block WhatsApp until it turns over data associated with a criminal case.

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