Edward Snowden, a former employee of the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA), who escaped to Russia, believes that the use of WhatsApp and Telegram is unsafe for officials. He stated this point in his interview with French radio station France Inter.
The radio correspondent in his conversation with Snowden said that the French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe uses WhatsApp to communicate with ministers. And to contact President Emmanuel Macron - the messenger of the Durov brothers. Asked about the risk, Snowden said both apps were better than SMS or phone without encryption, but using them was "very risky if you're a Prime Minister."
"Any government representative who deals with serious governance issues and uses WhatsApp makes a mistake": Edward Snowden.
The former NSA employee stressed that Facebook, which owns WhatsApp, removes "layer by layer" from the messenger, assuring users that no one listens to their conversations because all chats are encrypted on WhatsApp. Instead of Telegram and WhatsApp, Snowden recommends using Signal or Wire. The specialist stressed that they are free, like the others, but safer.
In 2013, Edward Snowden took the wraps off the program of U.S. intelligence agencies to spy on American citizens and residents of other countries. This forced him to flee the country. In 2014 he received a temporary residence permit in Russia. At the time, U.S. authorities brought several charges against Snowden for willful passing of intelligence data and stealing government property. In total, he achieved up to 30 years in prison.
In 2016, Snowden said WhatsApp was safer than Telegram. Telegram founder Pavel Durov disagreed with this statement, stressing that WhatsApp stores users' correspondence in an unencrypted form.
At the end of 2017, Snowden and Durov again argued about the security of Telegram. Then Durov accused the ex-NSA employee or not versed in the principle of secret chats. In May 2019, Durov again criticized WhatsApp for its security problems and urged users to persuade three friends to switch to Telegram with WhatsApp. So that "the era of greed and hypocrisy will come to an end."
In September, Edward Snowden admitted that he would like to seek political asylum in France. He acknowledged that whistleblowers should be given much higher protection.