Though many services such as WhatsApp have begun encrypting their data, Android and other mobile phone operating systems are vulnerable to hacks or inconsistencies in the way certain apps are coded. Here are a few privacy apps for Android users.
Signal: created by Open Whispers, Signal allows users to message people using only one interface. It also allows for voice calling and uses end-to-end encryption. The app also user-friendly and doesn’t require PINs or other complex login steps. Encryption is also revised periodically for security.
RedPhone Private Calls: in the era of Edward Snowden, people have become wary about having third parties spy on their phone calls. This app includes end-to-end encryption to make sure no third party has access to your calls. It is another app by Open Whispers. Best of all, the app is free on Google Play.
Telegram Messenger: this messaging app allows users to send messages without the hassle of worrying about privacy. Up to 200 people can be added to a group message. Only those who are intended to read it are meant to get messages sent from this app. There is even an auto-destroy feature on this app just in case.
Heartbleed detector: this app checks for vulnerabilities to Heartbleed on your computer, mobile and cloud devices. For those who aren’t familiar, the Heartbleed bug allows information to be stolen by using vulnerabilities in SSL/TSL encryption used to keep the internet secure. It is not a virus, as previously thought. This app then allows you to know about any vulnerabilities to keep your information safe.
TrueKey by Intel Security is designed to protect your passwords so you can access websites more easily. In addition, it has a master password that can be set to help gain access to other passwords. TrueKey can also use the phone’s camera as an iris scanner and the phones touch pad as a fingerprint scanner so that access can be gained in this way.
Tor apps: Tor has a variety of apps available for privacy on Android devices. Chat-secure can be used to send messages, OrFox can be used as a browser and is a secure version of FireFox, an OrBot can be used to connect to the Tor network using a proxy. These apps can be used as a combination for maximum security.
Ghostery: this browser allows people to browse the internet as in “invisible web” settings that keep advertising companies from collecting data to place targeted ads on websites frequented by users. This app also lets users know how these ad companies work, letting them know if there are opt-out options and alerting people about their privacy terms and conditions. FireFox also has Ghostery available as an extension.
Avira Phantom VPN: VPNs allow users to use the internet without worrying about regions. People who use VPNs can also be anonymous and encrypt the transmission of data. Avira is free with in-app purchases and allows users use up to 500MB of data routed to the VPN. When signing up with email, users can have as much as 1GB and there is also a fee of $54.99 to remove data limits.
BitDefender Antivirus Free: this user-friendly app is a good option for Android mobile phone users looking to protect themselves from vulnerabilities and viruses. The menu is simple to use and helps keep common unwanted viruses from plaguing your cell phone. The app checks new apps for possible viruses as well. There are more options available from BitDefender that can help keep your mobile phone even safer.