Do you often stay in touch through instant messaging apps such as Skype?
While they can be great fun, the bad news is that Skype, in particular, isn’t that secure. If you want true end-toend encryption for voice, video and text-based chats (as well as secure file sharing), then you’ll need to look into using an alternative solution.
The most secure we have found is Retroshare ( www.retroshare.net). The only catch is that you’ll have to convince all your contacts to use it, too — if this is a deal breaker, take a look at Jitsi ( jitsi.org), which supports a number of different messaging platforms.
You can install Retroshare (choose the QT5 version when at the download page) to your PC’s main storage drive or run it as a portable application, then set up your account and get each contact to do the same. You then export certificate files to send to each contact before importing their file in turn. Tick ‘Authenticate friend (Sign PGP Key)’ if you’re confident in their identity, then wait while Retroshare’s Connection Assistant sets up the connection.
It’s a fiddly process getting that initial connection set up (and you have to repeat it for each device you install Retroshare on and import your identity into), but once both of you are verified and connected to the other, you can be secure in the knowledge that future chats aren’t just encrypted and secure from unwanted eavesdroppers, but that you know exactly who you’re chatting with.