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Grow Your Business Technology

3 Best Free Secure Messaging Apps for Business (2017)

3 Best Free Secure Messaging Apps for Business (2017)
Encrypted messages can't be read by anyone but the intended recipient. / Credit: Shutterstock

For quick and easy communication, instant messaging is more convenient than email, and more secure than SMS text messaging – at least if you have the right app. A secure messaging application will let you safely exchange private information with employees, clients and co-workers, without worrying that your data could be compromised.

But what does it mean for messaging to be secure? Usually, it means that your messages are encrypted before they even leave your device. Encrypted messages can't be read by anyone other than the intended recipient, even if they're intercepted during the exchange.

Some apps even offer self-destruct functionality, letting you send messages that are automatically deleted after they're read. No messaging app is totally foolproof, but business users with privacy concerns would be wise to check out these three secure messengers, all of which are available for Android and Apple phones.

End-to-end encryption and a user-friendly interface make Signal Private Messenger a top choice for business users wanting a quick and easy solution to their communication security problems. This robust tool allows users to set up encrypted groups for private conversations, and since it uses your existing phone number and address book, you don't have to remember any additional usernames or passwords, or maintain a separate contacts list.

In addition to offering instant text communication (without SMS fees), Signal allows users to make secure phone calls, even internationally, without long-distance charges.

Download Signal for iOS or Android now.

In addition to offering the free messaging you want, Telegram Messenger makes it easy to sync your conversations across various devices, so you can start a chat on your phone and then pick it up on your laptop without missing a beat. It allows you to share media and files without any size limits, but note that the default setting will automatically store your files in the Telegram Cloud. This can be an asset, because you can access the information shared at any time without taking up space on your device, but if you want a truly secure chat that leaves no record make sure you turn on the Secret Chats function.

When Secret Chats is enabled, all your chats will self-destruct automatically (across all devices involved), none of your files shared will be stored anywhere, and end-to-end encryption will be turned on.

Download Telegram for iOS and Android now.

Wickr has been around since 2012, making it one of the first secure chat services around. Wickr is still a popular choice for encrypted messaging today because its free service is reliable, easy to use and well encrypted. It brings to the table the ability to set separate expiration dates for each message you send, which is handy for business users who may want to keep a short-term record of conversations or keep conversations going over a span of several days.

In addition to offering a free app that can work across all your devices, Wickr Me has a paid product called Wickr for Business. Wickr for Business is a suite of collaboration tools that, in addition to allowing for secured communication, offers users access to administrative controls and deployment, account controls, identity verification controls, two-factor authentication and other business-focused features.

Wickr Pro starts at $25 a month per active user and a free 30-day trial (for up to 20 active users) is available here.

Download Wickr Me for iOS and Android now.

Mona Bushnell

Mona Bushnell is a New York City-based Staff Writer for Tom’s IT Pro, Business.com and Business News Daily. She has a B.A. in Writing, Literature, and Publishing from Emerson College and has previously worked as an IT Technician, a Copywriter, a Software Administrator, a Scheduling Manager and an Editorial Writer. Mona began freelance writing full-time in 2014 and joined the Purch team in 2017.

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