WhatsApp and iMessage pass data to the FBI, but their eastern competitor, Telegram, isn’t safer at all. The difference is that he sends parcels to the FSB.
Much hype was sparked by a report by Rolling Stone magazine, published in early December, which found evidence that the US FBI is constantly trying to access data from instant messaging.
This practice itself did not surprise anyone, but some of its secrets do. For example, it has been revealed that both WhatsApp and iMessage are eager to share search history. The former is supposed to have a quarter of an hour to x-ray any person in the last 25 days.
Don’t ask who, but who with whom
At the same time, however, a kind of a laurel was issued to the communicator Telegram, which, in the light of the evidence gathered, is a much more discreet solution than its rivals. According to the presented findings, disclosing user data only in the case of justified suspicions of terrorist activity.
Sounds convincing, right? The trouble is, it doesn’t seem to work in practice. Or otherwise – it depends on the service that is asking.
There are cases, according to Christo Grozev, the famous Bulgarian investigative journalist complete account takeover on Telegram by the Russian FSB, despite active two-step verification. The columnist also mentions Fr. disappearing private chat sessions, and at the same time about the lack of comment from the creators of the sent queries on all these matters.
Recent incidents of hijacked @telegram accounts – likely by FSB – despite two-factor authentication; no response from Telegram despite reporting. Also incidents of secure chat sessions disappearing. Love the convenience of Telegram but be aware of these serious security issues.
– Christo Grozev (@christogrozev) December 4, 2021
This means that while Telegram is resistant to the FBI, it meekly brings secrets to the FSB, according to Grozev’s statement. Again, it’s hard to speak of surprise, but that also leads to one compelling conclusion: no mainstream messaging service can guarantee complete confidentiality.
It remains the same on the battlefield only Signal. Not quite perfect, because it also appears in FBI documents, but only in the context of the user’s registration date.
Photo source: Shutterstock (guteksk7)
Text source: Twitter (Christo Grozev), ed. own