how to protect your data during wartime. Tips from Rakuten Viber

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Since the begin­ning of the full-scale inva­sion, there have been many con­cerns about the safe­ty of using instant mes­sen­gers and online cor­re­spon­dence dur­ing wartime. The Rakuten Viber team shares tips that will help Ukraini­ans fig­ure out how to pro­tect pri­va­cy and secure their own cor­re­spon­dence.

Protect important chats with a PIN

Any chat in Viber can be hid­den from the list and pro­tect­ed with a PIN code. Thus, even if the phone falls into some­one else’s hands and is unlocked (for exam­ple, dur­ing a check in the occu­pied ter­ri­to­ries), these chats will not be detect­ed and read.

How to enable on iOS: Click on the chat name at the top of the screen → “Hide this con­tact” → Set PIN code. How to enable on Android: Log in to the chat → Set­tings (the sym­bol in the form of three dots on the top right) → “Chat infor­ma­tion” → “Hide this con­tact” → Set a PIN code.

Now the chat will not be dis­played in the gen­er­al list. It can be found and opened only with the set PIN code.

Use disappearing messages

A reli­able way not to save impor­tant infor­ma­tion in the chat on your smart­phone is through dis­ap­pear­ing mes­sages. The set timer auto­mat­i­cal­ly destroys cor­re­spon­dence after the select­ed time inter­val. In this case, third par­ties will not be able to read impor­tant mes­sages, even if the phone phys­i­cal­ly falls into their hands.

By the way, the recip­i­ent of such a mes­sage will not be able to take a screen­shot on Android. And on iOS, when try­ing to take a screen­shot or for­ward a mes­sage, the sender will receive a noti­fi­ca­tion.

How to enable: click on the clock icon in the 1‑on‑1 chat. After that, set the desired timer: 10 sec­onds, 1 minute, 1 hour. After this time, the mes­sage will dis­ap­pear.

Feel free to chat

Remem­ber: no one, not even Viber, can read your mes­sages in pri­vate chats. All your chats in Viber are encrypt­ed with end-to-end encryp­tion by default and are not stored on servers. Only you and the inter­locu­tor have the decryp­tion keys for each chat. The same goes for 1–1 voice calls. Such a secu­ri­ty sys­tem makes it impos­si­ble for third par­ties to steal cor­re­spon­dence and access calls.

Adjust Online and Viewed status

If for some rea­son you do not want oth­ers to see the time of your last vis­its, this infor­ma­tion can be hid­den. This also applies to the “Viewed” sta­tus for mes­sages.

How to con­fig­ure: “Set­tings” → “Pri­va­cy” → “Browsed” and “Online” options: turn them off by uncheck­ing the box.

By the way, the “Online” sta­tus can be changed once a day. And the dis­abled “Viewed” option will not allow you to find out whether oth­er users have viewed your mes­sages.

Limit adding to groups

Choose who can add you to group chats in your pri­va­cy set­tings. Dur­ing the war, it allows to ensure infor­ma­tion­al hygiene. Accord­ing to the fol­low­ing scheme, only con­tacts from your list will be able to add you to the group:

How to con­fig­ure: “Set­tings” → “Pri­va­cy” → “Set­tings for adding to groups”.

Set up two-step ver­i­fi­ca­tion

Pro­tect your account and per­son­al infor­ma­tion with email and PIN. Enabling this option ensures that only you can cre­ate a Viber account with your phone num­ber.

How to con­fig­ure: “Set­tings” → “Pri­va­cy” → “Two-step ver­i­fi­ca­tion”. Details are on the page: https://lp.viber.com/2‑step-verification-ua



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