With so many hacks and leaks around, it almost feels like whatever you say over IM or emails are going to be exposed by hackers some day.
One way to save you from those hacking attacks is to use self-destructing messaging apps that can delete the messages after a set period of time.
The demand for such apps have certainly skyrocketed in recent years, and it’s no surprise that we’re seeing a number of different apps pop up in this space.
We put together 9 self-destructing messaging apps that can save you from hackers. Here they are:
Snapchat: Probably the biggest player in this space, Snapchat has over 100 million users, mostly between the ages of 13 and 25. Users can send text, photos, and videos, and set them up to automatically delete after 1 to 10 seconds. The company, founded by Evan Spiegel, is now valued at $US10 billion.
TigerText: TigerText primarily targets business customers. It is HIPAA and SOX compliant, making it an appealing choice for companies in the medical and finance fields. For example, doctors can share and consult x-ray results without violating any compliance regulations. It has been downloaded more than 4 million times and roughly 5,000 organisations use it.
Wickr: Wickr proudly claims to offer “military grade encryption.” Like other competitors, Wickr automatically deletes texts, photos, and video files once the message is received. It’s been growing quite fast, raising $US39 million in funding and adding 22 language support. Wickr also has a bounty program where hackers can make up to $US100,000 by submitting vulnerabilities of the service.
Confide: The main difference between Confide and other competing apps is how you have to swipe your finger along the blocks covering each word in order to read the message. This makes is nearly impossible to take screenshots of the message, as only parts of the message is visible at any time. And if a screenshot is detected, each message self-destructs to prevent multiple screenshots.
Frankly: Frankly offers the same 10-second deleting feature just as Snapchat does. But it provides more fun features, like changing the size of fonts or background colour of the text. Its group chats are also slightly different in that the users know who is in the room, but have no idea who is actually sending the message. Since its founding in 2013, Frankly has raised around $US18.8 million in funding.
ClipChat: ClipChat is unique in that its messages are deleted after just five seconds. It blocks any attempt at screenshots, as the screen turns black when someone tries to capture the screen. Users can also share and see the video or photo they sent on a separate news feed with a selected group of friends.
Cyber Dust: Backed by Mark Cuban, Cyber Dust is often described as “WhatsApp meets Snapchat.” Its messages self-destruct after 30 seconds, and messages that aren’t viewed within 12 hours also expire and delete forever. Cuban says he has moved all his conversations to Cyber Dust, and is continuing to see a “big surge” in downloads following the recent Sony hack.
Ansa: Ansa works like a regular messaging app, but once the user presses its “off the record” button, all the messages sent under that function get deleted after 60 seconds. Users can go back to “on the record” mode anytime. It also allows users to delete old messages after months through its “sync deletion” feature.
Burn Note: Burn Note offers something called “Spotlight,” where the user needs to put a finger over the text to see the message. Similar to Confide, this allows the user to only see portions of the message at once. You can set up how long you’d like to keep the message available, and can delete it even before it’s opened.
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