Cryptocat, the encrypted chatting service has just released their iPhone app in the App Store. Cryptocat was initially rejected by Apple. It isn’t clear why it was rejected but according to the developers, Apple specifically had a problem with group chat encryption.The developer has indicated in a blog post that the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) helped in resolving the issues with Apple.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation helped us invaluably, heroically and skillfully with dealing with some potential problems with being able to release Cryptocat for iPhone.
Cryptocat has became quite popular in wake of the NSA controversy, where the agency was found to intercept and snoop on communications. Cryptocat’s end-to-end encryption by design doesn’t allow for anyone in the middle to read your messages.
Here’s how it works:
Cryptocat is different from other encrypted chat tools in that it doesn’t require usernames or accounts. Users enter a conversation using a one-time nickname. There are no buddy lists or account activity or account history to link back to the user. This way, Cryptocat offers a unique ephemerality that makes setting up encrypted conversations immediate and without any lasting history that can be traced back to users.
According to the developer, Cryptocat depends on native iOS APIs instead of web cryptography which has been used by other Cryptocat clients. The iPhone app uses the OTR protocol for private conversations, and multiparty protocol for group conversations. Cryptocat is also available for Mac, and also offers browser extensions for Chrome, Firefox, Safari and Opera.
So if you’re looking to chat with privacy, download Cryptocat from the App Store using this iTunes link.