Rich Communications Service Security

Text Message Security – Don’t be fooled by Rich Communications Service RCS

Monday 23 December, 2019

Text message security has long been known to be slack, with messages being easily intercepted or hacked for years. With the number of messages sent globally reaching eye watering figures, that’s a huge opportunity for the hackers to gain information that they can use to profit.

Why are text messages so insecure?

Firstly, text messages are not encrypted. This, in the initial instance, makes them completely insecure. If you then consider that the messages themselves are then sent across unencrypted and insecure networks, you can begin to see that your text messages are totally exposed to being hacked.

Although text message contents are very much limited in size and complexity, for example the sending images and video content can prove a struggle, there can often be enough information contained in them that a hacker will find useful.

The move away from insecure Text Messages

It was for this reason that there was a move towards Over The Top (OTT) types of messaging by a large number users. They began using apps such as iMessage and WhatsApp, to name but two. The OTT messages are encrypted and are sent over an IP network which allows them to be sent without having to touch the same insecure network as the standard SMS text message. It also provided far greater flexibility on the size of content that could be sent in one message and didn’t come with an associated cost.

Very few people realise that standard SMS messages are actually stored for significantly longer than is necessary. This longer storage time, which could be for day, weeks or even months, provides hackers with a much bigger window in which they can learn how to hack the system and thus you lose your mobile security and privacy.

In order to address some of the issues with the original SMS text message format, in particular the content that can be sent, the Rich Communications Service (RCS) has begun to be rolled out. This will allow users to send more rich content to one another, no matter what device they may be using. However, even though this is a new facility, and can meet the user’s need to send much more complex content in the same way as apps such as WhatsApp, do not be fooled in to thinking it’s any safer than using the original SMS system, it’s not. There is still no end-to-end encryption. You must still consider your mobile privacy and security even with the new RCS.

Blackphone Privy – Encrypted Text Security

The Blackphone Privy eliminates both of the major security issues that are posed by the original text massage and the new RCS messages, these being that the texts themselves are encrypted from end to end, and the network by which the messages are sent is secured. This means that no data or information of any kind can be taken and used by a hacker.

With the Blackphone Privy there is also the added advantage that the texts can be burned from your phone and that there is no storage of the messages, meaning the hackers have nothing to look for.

Despite newer ways of sending messages and content, there still remains serious question marks over their mobile security and privacy. This means that the Blackphone Privy remains the safest way of securing your mobile communications.

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