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Hike Sticker Chat to Now Encrypt Users’ Data with End-to-End Encryption, Auto Backup

Launched in April, Hike Sticker Chat app uses stickers as a foundation and aims to reduce people's dependency on the keyboard

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Launched in April, Hike Sticker Chat app uses stickers as a foundation and aims to reduce people's dependency on the keyboard. Wikimedia Commons

Betting big on safeguarding data along with seamless backup, Hike Sticker Chat — a dedicated platform aimed to deliver a sticker-centric chat experience — will now encrypt users’ data with nearly military-grade encryption, Kavin Bharti Mittal, Founder and CEO, Hike said here on Thursday.

Along with advanced encryption, the company has also introduced auto backup, to make switching from one device to another easier without manually backing up or restoring user data.

“As part of the update, we’re encrypting data with 128 bit advanced encryption standard (AES) and 2048-bit RSA which is one step away from military-grade encryption. All data on the platform is backed up on our own Cloud. We do that to keep our data extra secure.

hike sticker chat, encryption
Kavin Bharti Mittal, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Hike Messenger, India captured during the Session:”Conversation with Karan” at the India Economic Summit 2017 in New Delhi, India, Copyright by World Economic Forum / Benedikt von Loebell. Wikimedia Commons

“The encryption is happening for both data in transit and in rest, which means that if I’m exchanging data back and forth, the data in transit is encrypted and even if it is sitting on our servers, it is still encrypted there,” Kavin who is son of business tycoon Sunil Bharti Mittal, told IANS in a freewheeling chat. This level of encryption is even not available on Facebook-owned WhatsApp, even as the company says user data is end-to-end encrypted.

When asked how a user would back up messages, Mittal said: “They don’t need to. The data transfer happens just as a user enters their existing mobile number and then enter the four-digit PIN they receive on the new device”. Once a user logs in on a new device, they’re automatically logged out of the old device once the data becomes available on the new hardware.

“The auto backup will now make the whole backup and restore process a thing of the past and it is actually a painful process people have to undergo. The auto backup on our platform is synced all the time. No matter if you change the phone or reinstall the application, your data is synced within seconds,” Kavin explained.

hike sticker chat, encryption
The company is also launching Hike Web which, unlike WhatsApp Web, lets users enter their mobile number and then type four-digit PIN they receive on their device to access the platform on web. Pixabay

The company is also launching Hike Web which, unlike WhatsApp Web, lets users enter their mobile number and then type four-digit PIN they receive on their device to access the platform on web. WhatsApp Web still requires users to sign in by scanning a QR code on their device. The web version is currently available in public beta and Hike is slated to roll out updates to bring new features on a regular basis.

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Launched in April, Hike Sticker Chat app uses stickers as a foundation and aims to reduce people’s dependency on the keyboard. Currently, there are 40,000 stickers available in more than 40 Indian languages and dialects and the company is aiming to introduce more regional languages. According to Mittal, Hindi is currently the most sought-after language on the platform.

“We aim to have 100,000 stickers across various languages by the end of the year and to cover a larger percentage of every major Indian language’s vocabulary,” added Kavin. The platform currently has over one million Weekly Active Users (WAUs) who spend 33 minutes inside the app, exchanging over 55 million stickers weekly. (IANS)

Next Story

WhatsApp End-to-end Encryption May Weaken on Integration with Facebook

The New York Times reported on Friday that Facebook has planned to integrate chats within WhatsApp, Messenger and Instagram

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"WhatsApp Business" was launched last week in Indonesia, Italy, Mexico, Britain and the US. Pixabay

WhatsApp’s end-to-end encryption — the hallmark of users’ security — may go for a toss if Facebook integrates the popular mobile messaging platform with not-that-secure Instagram and Messenger.

According to a report in The Wired on Saturday, to universally preserve end-to-end encryption poses a whole additional set of critical challenges for Facebook.

WhatsApp chats are currently end-to-end encrypted by default. Facebook Messenger offers the feature if you turn on “Secret Conversations.”

“Instagram does not currently offer any form of end-to-end encryption for its chats,” the report said.

“The big problem I see is that only WhatsApp has default end-to-end encryption. So if the goal is to allow cross-app traffic, and it’s not required to be encrypted, then what happens? There are a whole range of outcomes here,” Matthew Green, a cryptographer at the Johns Hopkins University, was quoted as saying.

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WhatsApp on a smartphone device. Pixabay

WhatsApp co-founder and CEO Jan Koum quit Facebook over difference of opinion with CEO Mark Zuckerberg when it comes to data privacy and encryption.

Koum announced his exit “after clashing with its parent, Facebook, over the popular messaging service’s strategy and Facebook’s attempts to use its personal data and weaken its encryption”.

Brian Acton started WhatsApp with Koum. Facebook acquired the messaging service ago for $19 billion in 2014. Acton quit Facebook in 2017 and Koum left the company last April.

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The New York Times reported on Friday that Facebook has planned to integrate chats within WhatsApp, Messenger and Instagram.

“Facebook is still in the early planning stages of homogenizing its messaging platforms, a move that could increase the ease and number of secured chats online by a staggering order of magnitude,” said The Wired report. (IANS)