Instant Messaging

Discover secure and private ways to message others online without letting any third parties read your messages.

Encrypted Instant Messenger

Mobile: Signal

Mobile: Signal Signal is a mobile app developed by Open Whisper Systems. The app provides instant messaging, as well as voice and video calling. All communications are end-to-end encrypted. Signal is free and open source, enabling anyone to verify its security by auditing the code. The development team is supported by community donations and grants. There are no advertisements, and it doesn't cost anything to use.

Website: signal.org

OS: Android, iOS, macOS, Windows, Linux

Riot.im

beta

Riot.im Riot.im is a decentralized free-software chatting application based on the Matrix protocol, a recent open protocol for real-time communication offering E2E encryption. It can bridge other communications via others protocols such as IRC too.

Website: riot.im

OS: Android, iOS, macOS, Windows, Linux, Web

Desktop: Ricochet

Desktop: Ricochet Ricochet uses the Tor network to reach your contacts without relying on messaging servers. It creates a hidden service, which is used to rendezvous with your contacts without revealing your location or IP address. Instead of a username, you get a unique address that looks like ricochet:rs7ce36jsj24ogfw. Other Ricochet users can use this address to send a contact request - asking to be added to your contacts list.
Danger Always keep Tor up to date. See below: Updating the Tor binary included with Ricochet

Website: ricochet.im

OS: Windows, macOS, Linux.

Worth Mentioning

Related Information

Updating the Tor binary included with Ricochet

Currently there are no known vulnerabilities with Ricochet. The software is safe to use as long as you update the included Tor binary to the latest version.
  1. Download the Tor Browser.
  2. Run the Tor Browser installer or extract package for your platform. Windows (.exe), MacOSX (.dmg) and Linux (.tar.bz2).
  3. Copy the Tor binary or create a symbolic link to it:

    • Windows: Copy the Tor binary included with the Tor Browser and overwrite the old one included with Ricochet.
      • Tor Browser binary: %HOMEPATH%\Desktop\Tor Browser\Browser\TorBrowser\Tor\tor.exe
      • Ricochet's included binary: %HOMEPATH%\Desktop\Ricochet\tor.exe

    • MacOSX: Assuming you copied the Tor Browser.app and Ricochet.app from their respective .dmg install media to /Applications:
      Create a symbolic link to the Tor binary in Terminal. Ricochet will continue to use the up to date version of the Tor binary when you update the Tor Browser Bundle.
      • rm ~/Applications/Ricochet.app/Contents/MacOS/tor
        ln -s ~/Applications/Tor\ Browser.app/Contents/Resources/TorBrowser/Tor/tor \
        ~/Applications/Ricochet.app/Contents/MacOS/tor

    • Linux: Assuming you extracted the Tor Browser Bundle and Ricochet tarball to your home directory:
      • rm ~/ricochet/tor
        ln -s ~/tor-browser_en-US/Browser/TorBrowser/Tor/tor ~/ricochet/tor