Why Are Digital-Privacy Apps So Hard to Use?

from The Atlantic

Unless two people are in the same room, it’s hard for them to communicate information securely. Phone calls, emails, and text messages could be open to eavesdropping from governments, companies, or hackers—and even paper mail is subject to tracking.

Truly private online communications have been available for some time, but most require a high level of technology know-how. Those uncomfortable setting up a PGP key to encrypt their emails, for example, have for decades been left without an option to communicate securely.

But since Edward Snowden’s trove of leaked government documents revealed the extent of the National Security Agency’s domestic spying apparatus, digital privacy has begun to enter the consciousness of average consumers, and a small group of apps has sprung up to them. A few companies—most notably, Signal, Telegram, and WhatsApp—have created simple apps for private communication, their pleasant interfaces masking complex security systems built to withstand intense attacks.

More here.

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