Best Encrypted Messaging Apps You Should Use In 2022

Do you want to know which are the best encrypted messaging apps out there and how they can protect your valuable data? This guide might be exactly what you’re looking for.

Many of you could believe that all the private data shared via Facebook Messenger, Skype, or Snapchat is safe, but sometimes it’s just an illusion. Remember

that popular apps like Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, or Facebook Messenger do not use end-to-end encryption, so your conversations and files may not be fully protected.

On the other hand, there are many chat apps that provide messaging services that have upped their game on the security and privacy fronts by using end-to-

end encryption. Without end-to-end encryption, your conversations most likely will get into the hands of cybercriminals, and other malicious actors

focused on stealing them.

We compiled a list of reliable encrypted messaging apps because the struggle for keeping our data secure is fiercer than ever. Governments crave it, and companies

seek access to it, and cybercriminals probably want it the most.

The Most Secure Encrypted Messaging Apps

1. Signal 

Signal logo for best encrypted messaging apps article Heimdal

 

Here’s a secure messaging app that uses an encryption system and can keep your messages safe.

Whisper Systems created Signal as a successor to two separate apps dedicated to encrypted voice calling and encrypted texting.

Encryption was always at the core of the company’s products. When Twitter acquired it in 2011, the goal was to improve the security of the microblogging platform.

Its encryption engine is open source, which means is available for everyone to inspect.

The signal is used by notorious figures in cybersecurity and data privacy, such as Edward Snowden and Bruce Schneier! That’s because in Signal all

communication is encrypted end-to-end by default (and it’s one of the few encrypted messaging apps which employ this default system).

Recently, the app received a $50 million investment from WhatsApp co-founder Brian Acton who is supporting the non-profit Signal Foundation’s mission of

“making private communication accessible and ubiquitous”.

A signal is also WIRED’s secure messaging recommendation to use because “it’s free, it works on every mobile platform, and the developers are committed to keeping it simple and fast by not mucking up the experience with ads, web-tracking, stickers, or animated poop emoji.”

App cost: FREE

It can be downloaded for free on Google Play or App Store.

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2. iMessage

iMessage logo for Heimdal best encrypted messaging apps article

Apple Messages is an app used only on Apple devices, but it is perfect when it comes to security features. In addition to offering end-to-end encryption

between users, Apple Messages enables users to control how long the message stays up and how many times the receiver can see the message. This feature is

only available to those who have iOS 10 and above.

Core features of iMessage, available on all supported platforms, including sending texts, images, videos, and documents; getting delivery and read statuses (read receipts).

No matter what Apple device you’re using, whether it’s iOS, watchOS, or iPadOS, your messages are end-to-end encrypted and a password is required in order

to be accessed. Users of Apple’s FaceTime can also rest easy knowing that their video calls are also E2EE-empowered.

iMessage also allows sending location data and stickers. On iOS and iPadOS, third-party developers can extend iMessage capabilities with custom extensions,

an example being quick sharing of recently played songs.

App cost: FREE

 

3. WhatsApp

 

whatsapp logo
 

Since 2016, WhatsApp has enabled and implemented end-to-end encryption, so users can enjoy more secure communication. With more than 1.5 billion users,

the platform has been acquired by Facebook and offers a free app to small-to-medium sized and enterprise businesses alike.

Security-wise, encryption enhances communication privacy and protects users’ messages from impostors or malicious actors.  While security flaws may

appear, if cybercriminals were to breach WhatsApp today, they couldn’t decrypt your conversations. That’s due to the encryption and to the fact that WhatsApp doesn’t store your messages on its servers.

App cost: FREE

4. Viber

 

viber logo
When it launched its 6.0 version, Viber also rolled out end-to-end encryption, providing more safety for its users. The app maker even created a Viber

Encryption Overview serves as a great guide for those who want to learn in-depth information on this security enhancement.

Since 2017 its corporate name has been Rakuten Viber and is currently based in Luxembourg.

This private chat app has plenty of useful features in order to offer users a high-quality calling experience and all of them are secured, so the information shared is protected along the way with the end-to-end encryption system.

As long as you make sure to use the sharing method pointed out by Viber, your data will remain encrypted from your end all the way up to the recipient.

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App cost: FREE

Users: More than 900 million registered users

5. Threema

Here’s another secure texting app that we suggest giving a try. Everything you communicate while using Threema is encrypted end-to-end: not only messages

but also group chats, voice calls, media files, and even status messages. Your messages can be read-only by the intended recipient, so nobody else can interfere and have access to them.

The app makers also boast that they delete the messages you send from their servers once they’ve been delivered.

The Threema app has a “Private Chats” feature that can help users protect individual chats with a PIN code. This way, confidential chats are protected from malicious actors.

Another great thing about this app is the QR code and key fingerprint available for user verifications to prevent man-in-the-middle attacks.

App cost: 2,99 EUR

 

6. LINE

 

LINE logo
Another secure texting app that you can use to  This app has quite an unusual story. It was originally built by a team of Japanese engineers as a solution to

communicate after the devastating Tōhoku earthquake which happened in 2011. The calamity damaged the telecommunications infrastructure all over the

country, so the only way to communicate was based on Internet-connected platforms.

The same year, LINE added end-to-end encryption to its platform. This feature is called “Letter Sealing” and it’s available to all its users. They just have to turn it on to benefit from it.

App cost: FREE

Users: over 700 million

7. Telegram

 

telegram logo
In their own words: “Telegram is a messaging app with a focus on speed and security.” The app reached 200 million active users in March 2018 and continues to grow.

Similar to other messaging apps, Telegram offers end-to-end encryption as well, being considered one of the most secure messaging platforms. For users who want more privacy, they can turn on “Secret Chats” from the app’s advanced settings. Read more details about this feature:

“And when you delete messages on your side of the conversation, the app on the other side of the secret chat will be ordered to delete them as well.

You can order your messages, photos, videos, and files to self-destruct in a set amount of time after they have been read or opened by the recipient. The

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message will then disappear from both your and your friend’s devices.”

All secret chats in Telegram are device-specific and are not part of the Telegram cloud, meaning that you can only access messages in a secret chat from

their device of origin. If your device is safe, your secret chats are safe as well.

App cost: FREE

Users: Over 200 million active users

8. KakaoTalk

kakaotalk logo
Similar to other private chat apps listed above, KakaoTalk is a Korea-based messaging app that fully encrypted our conversations since 2014! To benefit from this feature, you have to use the “Secret Chat” feature, which is inspired by Telegram.

 

This feature offers users the option of securing messages with an end-to-end encrypted chatting option. However, KakaoTalk’s default chat mode is not end-to-end encrypted, so you’ll have to enable it.

The app makers boast that KakaoTalk is used by over 90% of smartphone users in South Korea, for which privacy and data security are the main concerns.

App cost: FREE

Users: Over 220 million registered

9. Dustcyber dust logo

Formerly known as Cyber Dust, it’s another private messaging app that uses end-to-end encryption as the main security and privacy feature. You may think of Snapchat when you’ll read about its way of functioning, as it says on the website:

“You can erase your messages off other people’s phones. No messages are permanently stored on phones or servers. Messages are heavily encrypted and not accessible to anyone, even us.”

What Dust is trying to create is a social communication platform with enhanced security and privacy, by using a combination of AES 128 and RSA 248 encryption.

App cost: FREE for both Android and iOS platforms

10. Wickr – Secure Messengerwickr logoAnother chat app that offers end-to-end encryption was created in 2012 by a group of security experts and privacy advocates.

This app is open source and doesn’t require a phone number or email address to register. Built with privacy in mind, Wickr I does not collect data or have access to users’ data.

This page dedicated to the encryption standard used in Wickr is extremely useful for those who want to understand how end-to-end encryption works.

App cost: FREE for Android and iOS

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