Telegram stands out for its emphasis on privacy and security. The platform operates on two fundamental principles regarding data collection and processing: it doesn’t use your data for ads, and only stores the necessary data for functioning as a secure messaging service. In this article we’ll explore the key points regarding Telegram's privacy settings.
Telegram Privacy Settings and Policies
Telegram is known for keeping your chats private and safe. It doesn't use your data for ads and only keeps the basic information it needs to work well. Here are some important things about how Telegram protects your privacy:
- Cloud Chats and Secret Chats: Telegram offers cloud chats which are stored on their servers, allowing access from any device. Additionally, it provides secret chats with end-to-end encryption, ensuring that only you and the recipient can access the messages.
- Data Encryption: Messages, photos, videos, and documents are stored heavily encrypted on Telegram's servers, with encryption keys stored in multiple data centers to prevent unauthorized access.
- Minimal Data Collection: Telegram requires only basic account data like mobile number, profile name, and optionally, a profile picture for account creation. They do not require or store additional personal information.
Notable Privacy Features:
- Encrypted secret chats that even the service cannot decrypt, making it a preferred choice for business communication.
- Users can request access to and deletion of their personal data.
- No usage of third-party analytics or tracking platforms.
- The app is open-source, allowing for transparency and community scrutiny, aligning with the top features making Telegram a preferred choice for businesses in 2023.
Analysis and Comparison: What Your Chat App Knows About You
In this part, we'll look at the privacy rules of different messaging apps like WhatsApp, Discord, LINE, and Messenger. By checking how they collect and use data, we want to help you understand how each app handles user privacy.
- WhatsApp: Collects account information, messages, connections, usage and log information, device and connection information, cookies, status information, and transactions. This data supports functionalities within WhatsApp, allowing them to operate, improve, and market their services.
- Messenger: Collects information to provide the service, improve the product experience, and keep people safe and secure. The content of your messages is not used for ad targeting, ensuring a level of privacy concerning your personal conversations.
- Discord: Collects a variety of data including user-provided information (like email address), automatically collected data (like IP addresses), and third-party data (like data from linked social media accounts). They use this data for various purposes including to provide and improve their services, to provide customer support, and for safety and security purposes.
- LINE: Collects data such as user-provided data, service use data, and third-party data. This encompasses information like your name, email address, and phone number, as well as usage data and information from linked social media accounts. The collected data is used to provide, maintain, and improve services, as well as to ensure the safety and security of the LINE platform.
Exploring Telegram's Privacy and Security Settings
Telegram offers many settings to keep your chats private and secure. Here are some of them:
- Secret Chats
- Description: Secret chats are encrypted, meaning only you and the person you're chatting with can read the messages.
- How to Use: To start a secret chat, open Telegram, tap on the pencil icon, select 'New Secret Chat', and choose a contact.
- Self-Destructing Messages
- Description: These messages disappear after being viewed.
- How to Use: In a secret chat, tap on the timer icon, select a time limit, and send your message.
- Two-Step Verification
- Description: A password adds extra security to your account.
- How to Use: Go to Settings > Privacy and Security > Two-Step Verification > Set Password.
- Auto-Delete Messages
- Description: Automatically deletes new messages after a set time.
- How to Use: Go to Settings > Privacy and Security > Auto-Delete Messages, set a timer, and choose if you want it for all chats.
- Passcode Lock
- Description: Adds a passcode to lock the Telegram app for extra security.
- How to Use: Go to Settings > Privacy and Security > Passcode Lock, set a passcode, and tap the lock icon to lock Telegram.
- Block User
- Description: Blocks other users from messaging you or adding you to groups.
- How to Use: Go to Settings > Privacy and Security > Blocked Users.
- Description: Link and unlink Telegram to multiple devices and keep track of them. You can automatically unlink inactive sessions.
- How to Use: Go to Settings > Devices, and from here you can view, link, or unlink devices.
- Phone Number
- Description: Control who can see your phone number and find you by it.
- How to Use: Go to Settings > Privacy and Security > Phone Number, and set your preferences.
- Last Seen & Online
- Description: Control who can see your online status and last seen time.
- How to Use: Go to Settings > Privacy and Security > Last Seen & Online, and set your preferences.
- Profile Photos
- Description: Control who can see your profile photos.
- How to Use: Go to Settings > Privacy and Security > Profile Photos, and set your preferences.
- Description: Control who can see your bio.
- How to Use: Go to Settings > Privacy and Security > Bio, and set your preferences.
- Forwarded Messages
- Description: Control if your forwarded messages can link back to your account.
- How to Use: Go to Settings > Privacy and Security > Forwarded Messages, and set your preferences.
- Description: Control who can call you.
- How to Use: Go to Settings > Privacy and Security > Calls, and set your preferences.
- Groups & Channels
- Description: Control who can add you to groups or channels.
- How to Use: Go to Settings > Privacy and Security > Groups & Channels, and set your preferences.
- Voice Messages
- Description: Control who can send you voice or video messages.
- How to Use: Go to Settings > Privacy and Security > Voice Messages, and set your preferences.
- Archive and Mute
- Description: Automatically archive and mute new chats from non-contacts.
- How to Use: Go to Settings > Privacy and Security > Archive and Mute, and set your preferences.
- Delete My Account
- Description: Set auto-account deletion if you’re away for some time.
- How to Use: Go to Settings > Privacy and Security > Delete My Account, and set your preferences.
- Bots and Websites
- Description: Clear payment info and track website logins using Telegram.
- How to Use: Go to Settings > Privacy and Security > Bots and Websites, and set your preferences.
- Description: Sync, delete, or suggest frequent contacts.
- How to Use: Go to Settings > Contacts, and set your preferences.
- Secret Chats
- Description: Enable map or link previews in secret chats.
- How to Use: While in a secret chat, tap on the settings icon and toggle on/off map or link previews.
The Importance of Privacy in Messaging Apps
Privacy is key when chatting, especially for work. A good app should keep your chats secret. It's wise to choose an app that guards your privacy, so your personal or work details are safe. Some apps take too much data, which can be bad for privacy. For businesses, a private app helps keep important chats and info safe.
For more on keeping your info safe online, check this EFF guide.
In the world of messaging apps, privacy rules are important for users, especially for work chats. Telegram, known for privacy, is different from others. By knowing the privacy settings in different apps, users can pick the right one, balancing useful features with data safety. Try Telegram and find a messaging app made with privacy in mind.