Millions of Private Text Messages Have Been Exposed: Here’s How to Encrypt Messages on iPhone and Android – Tech Times

An online privacy company said on Sunday (Dec. 1) that a database housing millions of private SMS text messages were exposed online for an extended period. According to cybersecurity experts,TrueDialog, a text messaging firm based in Texas, was the company responsible for the leak.

Researchers at thevpnMentor, the company that reported the leak, stated that they were able to access the messages because the logs were left completely unsecured and unencrypted by the Texas-based firm. The leaked text messages exposed the private information of TrueDialog users, such as Google and Facebook passwords and usernames.

The researchers offered to help close the text message leak, but TrueDialog never responded to their proposal.

"We contacted the company. We disclosed our findings and offered our expertise in helping them close the data leak and ensure nobody was exposed to risk," vpnMentor said. "The database has since been closed, but TrueDialog never replied to us."

TechCrunchalso examined the leak and reported that university finance applications, phone numbers, job alerts, and other private information were also exposed.

Although the leak has since been closed, the researchers still warned that "millions of Americans are at risk." In line with the event, experts went on to remind the public about the importance of encrypting their text messages.

"The impact of this data leak can have a lasting impression for hundreds of millions of users. The available information can be sold to both marketers and spammers," vpnMentor said.

Encrypting your messages is important if you do not want others to snoop in your conversations. While there is no foolproof way to keep hackers and fraudsters at bay, you can at least make their job difficult by encrypting your SMS. Here are some steps to follow to protect your messages on your iPhone and Android phones:

If you are an iPhone user and texting to another iPhone, iPad, or iMac user, you are pretty much covered if you use the iMessage app. You would know that your messages are encrypted if you see the blue bubble instead of the green one in your conversations.

Both iPhone and Android phone users can download the app Signal. However, encryption will only work if the other user is using the app. Signal has other security features you can use, including restricting others to take screenshots of your conversations, making messages disappear after 5 seconds, and disabling keyboards from learning what you type.

Another option is using the WhatsApp application and making it your default messaging app. As with iMessage and Signal, the other user must use the app to enable encryption. WhatsApp has a web interface, too, so you can conveniently encrypt your messages from your computer.

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Millions of Private Text Messages Have Been Exposed: Here's How to Encrypt Messages on iPhone and Android - Tech Times

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