Archives - Apps


Keep WhatsApp and similar messaging apps up-to-date

Internet-based chat apps are generally safer than plain SMS (text) messages, but they’re not necessarily bulletproof. An exploit in WhatsApp, allowing malware injection, showed that even apps touting “end-to-end encryption” sometimes have vulnerabilities. To stay safe, apply any updates as soon as possible or – for particularly sensitive conversations – take them offline or use […]

Know all your apps

These terms are often used interchangeably but they refer to different threats. Viruses can self-replicate and spread easily through a computer or network. Ransomware is designed to hold data hostage by encrypting it and asking you to pay for the decryption key. Malware is a broad category that includes these two threats and many others.

Don’t assume an app is safe just because it came from an official app store

Downloading apps from official sources such as the Apple App Store and Google Play is far safer than sideloading apps or buying them from third-party stores. Still, even official apps can have their security compromised or be problematic for privacy. The best way to mitigate your risk is to check the permissions the apps ask […]

Use encrypted messaging apps instead of SMS when possible

Text messages, sent via carrier SMS, are fixtures of mobile communications. But they’ve lost ground to over-the-top (i.e., internet-based) services such as Apple iMessage, WhatsApp and Telegram. Those alternatives are not only more richly featured, but many have end-to-end encryption as well – something SMS and even its successor, RCS, do not support.

Explore alternatives to Facebook’s main mobile apps

Facebook and Messenger are two of the most common mobile apps, but they both ask for extensive permissions and consume a lot of battery. One alternative is to use the Facebook mobile website, which is less resource-intensive and minimalist. You can also find third-party messaging clients like Friendly that handle all of Messenger’s functionality in […]

Be wary of third-party applications on social platforms

Third-party applications may provide entertainment or functionality, but use caution when deciding which applications to enable. Avoid applications that seem suspicious, and modify your settings to limit the amount of information the applications can access.