With all of the talk about data privacy following recent reports of U.S President, Donald Trump wanting to ban the Chinese government-affiliated social media platform, TikTok, due to data privacy breaches. Notwithstanding, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, alongside other social media giants, have been accused of monetizing and selling users’ data. Hackers and Big Brother are watching your moves, but you still need to connect online.
These troubles may be a thing of the past with the latest innovation from Tim Draper-backed, Unstoppable Domains, allowing decentralized chat and messaging services. The new ‘dChat’ service promises a private chat channel between peers on an end-to-end encrypted platform with messages stored on a p2p network.
This will allow users to own, encrypt, and store their messages on their servers, preventing any other person from having unauthorized access.
The dChat service brings total privacy
The new privacy chat service is a product of Mozilla’s “Fix The Internet” incubation program that aims at providing solutions to fix privacy problems across the web. To ensure security and privacy is maintained, the users’ inbox requires an Ethereum wallet private key to log in and decrypt the messages.
Speaking on the launch of dChat, the CEO of Unstoppable Domains, Brad Kam explains the need to have an ETH private key and how to have an even more private chat room. He said,
“You must use an Ethereum wallet private key. That is what guarantees that no one can access the chat other than you. If you’re concerned about privacy, then create a wallet just to store your domain. You can remain pseudo-anonymous.”
A confrontation with governments
While data privacy is a key issue to most people, the government will not be as pleased with the latest dChat development as it obscures the citizens’ activities from the spying eye of governments. However, there is the added risk of such platforms incentivizing illicit actors and content on the internet hence the government intervention.
Currently, the US’s EARN IT Act is in the Senate, which, if passed, will force private companies to give up crucial information to allow a backdoor in the end-to-end encryption messaging system. dChat will bypass these laws according to Kam, who claims at the protocol level, the messaging system cannot be stopped. Kam said,
“There is no way for a company to stop usage at the protocol layer. That is by design. It is the only way to have a safe system.”
The company is looking into developing voice chats and video conferencing apps with the same privacy enhancement in the future, rivaling Brave Browser in this regard.