The desire for digital privacy isn’t new, and neither is the glut of mobile apps designed to ensure it. But there are some programs that keep your data safer than others. Wiper, a messaging app newly launched in the Google Play Store, is one SMS replacement that can deliver peace of mind to anyone who wants to make their texts a little more private.
At its core, Wiper is akin to other popular messengers like WhatsApp. It can be used to place calls and send texts videos, pictures, and the like. What really sets Wiper apart, though, is its ability to allow either participant in a conversation to “wipe” away all traces of their communications with a single tap. Not just from the initiator’s mobile device, mind you, but from the recipient’s device as well. Data is also instantly erased from Wiper’s server, leaving no record of said conversation or exchanged files.
End-to-end encryption on calls and messages also eliminates the possibility that someone can hack into your conversation before the “wipe” option can be selected. The uses for this type of functionality are innumerable and go far beyond the possibilities inherent in giving lawbreakers secure methods of communication. Professionals communicating proprietary information via Wiper can breathe easy knowing any trade secrets or inside information will be kept out of the wrong hands. And everyday users who have to transmit sensitive information like credit card numbers, tax information, or just an embarrassing selfie can take steps to ensure their data gets erased after the recipient’s received it.
Other handy features include notifications that are sent when your partner takes a screenshot of your message, and BBM-style read receipts. Oh, and while you might expect an app that places such high emphasis on security to be lacking in the aesthetics department, Wiper is far from ugly, with a sleek, intuitive interface that isn’t likely to confuse anyone.
As you’d expect from an app designed for those keen on privacy, installing Wiper involves two-step email verification process in which a unique code is sent to your account’s email address. In order to sign in and use the app, you have to key those digits into your phone. The only trouble with this is that the two-step verification is required each and every time you sign in, which arguably goes beyond safety and into the realm of annoyance. You can still close out of the app without having to verify every time it’s launched, and your connection can remain in place even if your device is rebooted, but if you select “log out” from the Preferences menu, the process has to be repeated.
That’s a pretty insignificant complaint in the grand scheme of things, though, especially when you consider the fact that most downloaders will be individuals who are okay with taking additional steps to safeguard the privacy of their digital communications. Wiper is available in the Google Play Store right now at no cost for mobile devices running Android 4.0 and newer.