Privacy in danger?: What user data get WhatsApp, Telegram, Signal and Facebook Messenger

After WhatsApp introduced updates earlier this year that will allow it to share users’ personal information with its parent company, Facebook, many began looking for alternatives.

While some chose in favor of Telegram, which claims that “it has not revealed a single byte of the private data” of its users, others preferred to download Signal, a platform that also emphasizes privacy and security. However, even to all these applications we provide some of our data.

What personal data do the most used messaging services collect?

Facebook Messenger

Identifiers (user and device ID)

Contact information (name, phone number, email, physical address, other user contact information).

Contacts

Shopping history

Advertising data

Interaction with the product

Financial and payment information

Search history

Browser history

Approximate and exact location

Health and fitness

User content

Usage Data

Sensitive information

Fault data

Performance data

Other diagnostic data

Other types of data

WhatsApp

Identifiers (user and device ID)

Contact information. (phone number, email)

Contacts

Approximate location

Advertising data

Shopping history

Interaction with the product

Financial information

User content

Usage data

Failure data

Performance data

Other diagnostic data

IMessage

Identifiers (device ID)

Contact information (phone number, email)

Search history

Telegram

Identifiers (user ID)

Contact information (phone number)

Contacts

Signal

Contact information (the company ensures that the app does not link the phone number to the user’s identity)

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