Instant messaging service Signal says rumours on hacking not true amid uptick in Eastern Europe

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Instant messaging app Signal stated on Monday that rumours that the app was compromised and hacked are false. The app also said that it saw an uptick in usage in Eastern Europe amid the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine. 

The company announced this through its official Twitter handle and it added “We believe these rumours are part of a coordinated misinformation campaign meant to encourage people to use less secure alternatives.”

“We’re seeing these rumours appear in messages forwarded on several different apps. These rumours are often attributed to official government sources and read “attacks on Signal platform.” This is false and Signal is not under attack,” Signal wrote on Twitter.

The announcement comes after Moxie Marlinspike, founder of the Signal app and cryptographer, criticised its rival app Telegram on his official handle. 

He said, “Telegram is the most popular messenger in urban Ukraine. After a decade of misleading marketing and press, most ppl there believe it’s an ‘encrypted app’.”

Marlinspike also says, “Telegram has a lot of compelling features, but in terms of privacy and data collection, there is no worse choice.”

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Further, he added every message, photo, video, document sent/received for the past 10 yrs is available to anyone with access to the database. 

Signal: What you need to know

Signal is a cross-platform instant messaging service developed by the non-profit Signal Technology Foundation and Signal Messenger LLC. Users can send one-to-one and group messages, which can include files, voice notes, images, and videos.

The app is available on Android, iOS, Windows, macOS, and Linux. Powered by the open-source Signal Protocol, the Signal app has end-to-end encryption, meaning the platform cannot read or listen to the messages. 

Unlike Telegram, which saves users data on servers, the encryption keys are stored on users’ phones and computers, and not on servers.

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