Instant messaging applications have been repeatedly used in various companies to connect with their clients. In the financial services sector, many bankers and traders find apps like WeChat to be convenient channels of communication since many of their clients favored using them over other means to transact business.
In China, traders and bankers actively use WeChat to make deals even when various companies in other countries shun such messaging apps. Instant messaging apps are not compliant with most regulatory requirements, which means that companies using them can face serious compliance risks.
Regulators have cracked down on an insider trading case using WeChat conversations, highlighting the importance of monitoring the various mobile messaging solutions to keep illegal activities from occurring.
- WeChat Monitors on Business Conversations
The internet in China is not like the internet around the world due to censorship on specific content. WeChat also censors content through constant monitoring of all conversations, even when the communications are from people outside China.
China scanned and flagged plenty of politically sensitive content. Flagged messages are sent to a machine-learning system used to censor content in China. The biggest problem with WeChat’s spying activities is that it doesn’t disclose any of its monitoring activities to its foreign users. Without a third-party conducting its own investigations, like The Citizen Lab’s report, international users won’t find out that their conversations are being monitored to help WeChat’s censorship algorithm.
The Indian Defence Ministry decided to ban WeChat due to its lack of privacy and its potential to have spyware or malware. A memo from the Defence Ministry said that “use of these apps by our force personnel can be detrimental to data security having implications on the force and national security.” Because WeChat is already feared to cause problems at the national level, it stands to reason that the business communications can also be monitored through spyware.
- No End-to-End Encryption
WeChat is subject to both censorship and surveillance, which means the app has no end-to-end encryption that can protect an individual’s privacy. Multiple applications also allow people to monitor other users’ conversations. The application called mSpy can send reports on a user’s calls, browsing, text messages, WeChat conversations, and more, back to the app’s owner. Other applications include Spyzie, ExactSpy, iKey Monitor, and WeChat Hacker.
Using spy software, people can monitor a user’s activities and invade the privacy of those involved in a conversation.
The lack of end-to-end encryption also allowed the app to be accessed via a backdoor and eventually access the user’s phone.
- Possibility of Malware Infecting Personal Devices
WeChat has multiple privacy issues, including the risks of getting infected with malware. Many hackers embedded malicious code in various apps like WeChat by convincing developers to use tainted versions of the Xcode “toolkit,” Apple’s software used in creating multiple apps for both Mac and the iOS. The iOS App Store was then filled various applications with malware.
Because WeChat already had multiple privacy issues, many people have concerns about their data privacy. Companies with BYOD policies can find that its data and its employees’ business communications data are being stolen.
WeChat Archiving solutions that can also serve as secure enterprise messaging solutions are essential for businesses to connect with their clients with lesser worries on data breaches. Using the standard WeChat can lead to many significant risks besides compliance and regulatory risks due to its lack of end-to-end encryption and other privacy issues.
TeleMessage captures and retains mobile content, including mobile SMS messages, voice calls, and WeChat conversations from corporate or BYOD mobile phones to ensure compliance with various data protection regulations. The messages are securely and reliably retained within TeleMessage servers or forwarded to your choice archiving data storage vendor.
Our mobile archiving products securely record content from mobile carriers and mobile devices for various ownership models (BYOD, CYOD, and employer-issued). With our multiple archiving solutions, you can always find the right tools or blend for your requirements:
TeleMessage offers cross-carrier and international mobile text & calls archiving for corporate and BYOD phones. Visit our website at www.telemessage.com to learn more about our mobile archiving products.