La France aime l’open source
French government chooses Matrix and Riot as the basis for its secure instant messenger app.
Aprivate collection of Matrix homeservers will span the French government as it develops a fork of Riot.im ( https://about.riot.im) the secure open source instant messaging service. The fork will be used as a basis for its own official secure communications client, replacing
WhatsApp and Telegram. As the Matrix team notes in the blogpost ( http://bit.ly/matrix-riot) announcing the news, “Matrix’s decentralisation and end-toend encryption is a perfect fit for intra- and inter-governmental communication.”
Combined with the news ( above) about the German government using Nextcloud, it’s another great example of a public body seeing FOSS as a means to create affordable software and services that are open to their citizens.
According to the government’s press release, the drive to create this open and secure instant messaging tool was led by the Interministerial Department of State Digital, Information and Communication Systems (DINSIC), and it’s developed by New Vector, a Franco-British startup. Not only will it be used by the French government, but it’s also being looked at by other countries, such as the Netherlands and Canada. According to the press release, there’s already been three months of development and the tool is expected to be rolled out during the summer.