By Jen Picciano, Reporter
Smartphone security is a hot topic that’s made news headlines recently, and has raised new concerns. How do you keep what’s on your phone secure and private?
Experts tell us that a whole new industry of apps and software are popping up, promising to encrypt your chats, messages, and emails. We’re finding out how they work, what features they promise, and if they really keep your information protected.
Dave Crusoe of Atlanta cringes just thinking about all the personal and business information on his phone and table. So, he installed a program called IP Vanish to encrypt messages and emails on all his devices.
“I do worry about unauthorized people reading my chats or my messages. An encryption app is really a no-brainer these days,” Crusoe said.
There’s a high-tech explosion of encryption apps, experts say, that seem to be most popular with millennials. The programs offer to keep private what personal information you want.
“There is no question this has become a hot market,” says Matti Kon with InfoTech in New York.
It’s like writing a message using a secret code, so only the people that have access to the unique code can understand the message. Kon says digital encryption codes are nearly impossible to crack.
“Encryption today works on keys and keys that are random and are at the hands of the sender and the hands of the receiver and there is really no way to break encryption algorithms, if you take any typical encryption algorithm you’ll need over 100 years on a powerful computer to break the encryption,” Kon says.
So what apps are out there promising to safe guard your privacy?
- The Wire: Offers end to end encryption of voice and video messages.
- The Signal Messaging App: Says you can say anything and it’s encrypted.
- Wicker Me: Offers expiration times for messages and a “shredder” to remove all deleted messages, images, and videos from your device.
Some offer James Bond-like verification codes so users can confirm their messages are secure. What’s App is another popular privacy app.
Kon says, “They give a feeling of confidence, they give a feeling that, you know, your data will not be violated, you get a feeling that here we finally found the solution.”
Apps like that are exactly what Crusoe relies on, saying, “Privacy is a fundamental aspect of our life today as is security. We need to ensure that the content we have on our devices is only viewed by the intended recipient.”