Signal messaging platform stops working as downloads surge

Signal messaging platform stops working as downloads surge
Signal is a free, encrypted messenger service - and a rival to WhatsApp and Telegram. Source: Reuters
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Daily US Times: Messaging platform Signal said it was experiencing “technical difficulties” as it worked to accommodate huge new users surge.

Some users reported messages failing to send on both the desktop and mobile apps for several hours.

The company has seen a huge surge in interest since its rival WhatsApp unveiled new privacy terms last week.

Signal said on Twitter that it had added servers “at a record pace” and was working to restore service.

Its tweet adds:”Millions upon millions of new users are sending a message that privacy matters.”

Both Telegram, another free-to-use encrypted messaging app and Signal have benefited from discontent sparked by WhatsApp’s updated terms and conditions.

WhatsApp told its two billion users they must allow it to share data with its parent company Facebook if they wished to continue using the app.

This does not apply to users in the United Kingdom and Europe – but the notification was sent to everyone.

WhatsApp noted that its practice of sharing data with Facebook was not new, and was not being expanded. The company said there had been “confusion” about its message, which initially gave people until 8 February to accept its updated terms and conditions or stop using the service.

WhatsApp has now changed the deadline to 15 May, saying it would use the time to clear up misinformation.

In an earlier FAQ blog post, WhatsApp said: “We can’t see your private messages or hear your calls, and neither can Facebook.”

According to data from analytics firm Sensor Tower, Signal was downloaded 246,000 times worldwide in the week before WhatsApp announced the change on 4 January and 8.8 million times the week after.

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