Encrypted Messaging Applications


Encrypted messaging applications have become increasingly popular as users become more aware of the need to secure their personal and professional communications.

This article will cover encrypted messaging applications, their differences from standard messaging applications, common features, use cases, and when you should build one. Finally, we will provide a step-by-step guide on how to make a simple encrypted messaging application using PubNub.

What is an encrypted messaging application?

An encrypted messaging application provides secure communication between two or more parties. A secure message application uses cryptography to encode user messages so that only the intended recipients can read them. The encryption process ensures that unauthorized parties cannot intercept or read the messages.

Encrypted vs. standard messaging applications

The main difference between encrypted and standard private chat applications is security. Traditional messaging applications such as WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and iMessage are designed for ease of use but may not provide the same level of protection as encrypted messaging applications. On the other hand, the best secure messaging applications prioritize the privacy and security of users' messages but may have a steeper learning curve or fewer features.

Common features of an encrypted messaging application

Some standard features of the most secure messaging apps include:

  • End-to-end encryption

  • Message expiration

  • Self-destructing messages

  • Secure file sharing

Use Cases for an Encrypted Messaging Application

Encrypted messaging applications are ideal for individuals and organizations prioritizing privacy and security.

Some everyday use cases for a secure messenger include personal communication, group messaging, political activism, financial transactions, and business communications.

When should you build an encrypted messaging application

Building an encrypted messaging application may be the right choice if you require secure and private communication for personal or business reasons. Consider creating an encrypted messaging application if you want a safer alternative to standard messaging applications or require a customized solution that meets your specific needs.

Build vs. Buy an encrypted messaging application

It may seem that the best, most-straightforward option would be enlisting your developers to build your private messaging chat solution. They must create everything from your chat features and backend architecture to future maintenance and updates. Your developers will always understand your company’s specific needs and use case best.

Building even basic chat, along with any other real-time feature, from scratch is expensive and time-consuming, and it opens the door to potential roadblocks, delays, and vulnerabilities. What if your developers use the wrong encryption protocol for your secure messaging app? Chat is significant to your application’s success, but it shouldn’t be your team’s primary focus. Time spent building this backend infrastructure is time that developers are not focusing on your core product.

Purchasing a third-party solution to build out the infrastructure and core functionality for your encrypted messaging app is the only natural way to ensure operational reliability and long-term scalability and to build all the essential chat security features your users need in a timely, cost-effective manner. By relying on experts like PubNub, to make your chat, you gain all these benefits without needing to sacrifice the total customization of your chat, with flexible SDKs, chat and UI components, and a library of integrations.

Things to consider when building an encrypted messaging application

When creating an encrypted messaging application, there are several things to consider. These include:

  • Technology: Choose the technology and tools you will use to build your application, such as programming languages and encryption algorithms.

  • Costs: Consider the costs of building and maintaining the application, including hardware, software, and personnel expenses.

  • User experience: Ensure that your application is user-friendly and intuitive so that users are motivated to use it.

How to build a simple encrypted messaging application

Making an encrypted messaging application can seem daunting, but with the right tools and guidance, it can be a relatively simple process.

Here are the steps you need to follow:

1. Choose your technologies: Decide on the programming languages, databases, and encryption algorithms you will use.

2. Set up your infrastructure: Choose a server, configure your database, and set up your encryption keys for authentication.

3. Develop your application: Write the source code for your encrypted messaging application, including the encryption and decryption processes.

4. Test your application: Test your application to ensure it works as intended.

5. Deploy your application: Deploy your instant messaging application to a server, cloud platform, or app store for users to access.

6. Maintain and improve your application: Continuously maintain and enhance your chat apps to ensure it remains secure and user-friendly.

Getting Started with PubNub for your encrypted messaging application

PubNub is a real-time messaging platform that can be used to build encrypted messaging applications. With PubNub, you can quickly and easily add real-time messaging capabilities to your messaging service, allowing users to send and receive encrypted messages in real time.

To get started with PubNub, follow these steps:

1. Sign up for a PubNub account: Go to the PubNub website and sign up for an account.

2. Create a new app: Create a new app in your PubNub account.

3. Integrate PubNub into your application: Integrate PubNub into your encrypted messaging application using the PubNub SDK.

4. Add encryption: Add encryption to your messages using the PubNub encryption library.

5. Expand: Turn on other features like Notifications, Message Persistence, or Objects for storing user data.

Encrypted messaging applications are critical for individuals and organizations prioritizing privacy and security. Get started with PubNub today for free and start building your encrypted messaging application.