Viber Follows WhatsApp, Adds Encryption
Being a major rival to giants like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger is a noblesse oblige case. It’s not the competition one can stand without catching up with others quickly. So it has been expected that Viber would add end-to-end encryption for all its apps, and the process didn't take long.
Viber is a popular messaging service used by about 700 million people. Developed by Belorussian and Israeli citizens, now it’s owned by Japan-based Rakuten company. Anyway, this service is out of the jurisdiction of the US law, and it’s a real alternative for those not trusting American security policy.
Security Should Be Seen
The innovation also implies visual indication of security level. Grey color of conversation means that it’s protected.
The green color indicates manually authenticated contacts that Viber user has marked as trusted.
If communication security is not guaranteed, here comes the red.
You can also protect some chats from being seen by strangers accessing your device. It would require a standard 4-digit PIN code to get access to these high privacy chats.
This feature is similar to hiding private folders in your photo gallery. iOS users can use Touch ID instead of a PIN.
It seems like Viber is aiming to become the security leader. Another service that has been acknowledged as the most protected one is Telegram, created by Russian-born Durov brothers. For obvious reasons, the ex-Soviet developers are strongly concerned about privacy and pay so much attention to it.
The update will roll out gradually all over the world. Some users may have to update their Viber app manually, especially those who have installed modified versions.