Telegram (Android / Google Play)

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This application is available for Android. >>>> SHORT DESCRIPTION <<<<<. The latest build was released on July 7, 2017. Our latest check was performed on May 17th, 2017

Findings Summary

Our examination revealed total 39 items, where were 19 DAR items and 20 DIT items found. Among DAR items were found 0 worst items, 0 bad items, 18 good items, and 1 best item. Among DIT items were found 1 worst item, 0 bad items, 19 good items, and 0 best items.

Below you find 3 infographics summarizing what we described above. Each image provides information about both DAR and DIT items.

 

 

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Everything presented below is related to well-known CWEs, such as Sensitive data leakage [CWE-200], Unsafe sensitive data storage [CWE-312], Unsafe sensitive data transmission [CWE-319]. You can read more about it here.

Now let’s go deeper and examine each data item’s protection level.

 

Application Description

Let’s cite the description of this application below:

Pure instant messaging — simple, fast, secure, and synced across all your devices. Over 100 million active users in two and a half years.
FAST: Telegram is the fastest messaging app on the market, connecting people via a unique, distributed network of data centers around the globe.
SYNCED: You can access your messages from all your devices at once. Start typing on your phone and finish the message from your tablet or laptop. Never lose your data again.
UNLIMITED: You can send media and files, without any limits on their type and size. Your entire chat history will require no disk space on your device, and will be securely stored in the Telegram cloud for as long as you need it.
SECURE: We made it our mission to provide the best security combined with ease of use. Everything on Telegram, including chats, groups, media, etc. is encrypted using a combination of 256-bit symmetric AES encryption, 2048-bit RSA encryption, and Diffie–Hellman secure key exchange.
POWERFUL: You can create group chats for up to 5,000 members, share large videos, documents of any type (.DOC,.MP3,.ZIP, etc.), and even set up bots for specific tasks. It”s the perfect tool for hosting online communities and coordinating teamwork.
RELIABLE: Built to deliver your messages in the minimum bytes possible, Telegram is the most reliable messaging system ever made. It works even on the weakest mobile connections.
FUN: Telegram has powerful photo and video editing tools and an open sticker/GIF platform to cater to all your expressive needs.
SIMPLE: While providing an unprecedented array of features, we are taking great care to keep the interface clean. With its minimalist design, Telegram is lean and easy to use.
100% FREE & NO ADS: Telegram is free and will always be free. We are not going to sell ads or introduce subscription fees.
PRIVATE: We take your privacy seriously and will never give third parties access to your data.
For those interested in maximum privacy, Telegram offers Secret Chats. Secret Chat messages can be programmed to self-destruct automatically from both participating devices. This way you can send all types of disappearing content — messages, photos, videos, and even files. Secret Chats use end-to-end encryption to ensure that a message can only be read by its intended recipient.
We keep expanding the boundaries of what you can do with a messaging app. Don’t wait years for older messengers to catch up with Telegram — join the revolution today.

 

Protection levels.

Locally stored data (Data-at-Rest, DAR).

Locally stored data groups include Media Information, Address Book ‘n’ Contact Information, Account Information, Call Information, Message Information, Device Information, Log Information, Application Information.
The average DAR value is 6.53 points (7.00 points of system protection and 6.05 points of own protection). It is higher than a typical value (3.5 points, where’s 7 points of system protection and 0 points of own protection).

Items’ GROUP #1 with average value 6.50 points (7 points of system protection, 6 points of own protection) means data protection levels have following definitions. Frankly talking, protection and privacy issues are still possible but might involve interaction with an app code where system protection level means – root/jailbreak is required but not possible without wiping device data, and own protection level means – data is not available in backups.

– Media Data (‘Media Information’ Group) – Any info like images, audios, videos, media notes, etc. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any data like photo, image, video, audio,

– Account Media (‘Address Book ‘n’ Contact Information’ Group) – Full or reduced image of account. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be info locally stored, cached or transferred over the network and belong to this application if it’s social even,

– Account Data (‘Account Information’ Group) – Basic info about account like name, a list of sub-account (e.g. financial or other) and some linked data like a phone number. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any info related to profiles, basic credential IDs like email or username or phone number plus some more info depends on applications,

– Media URLs (‘Account Information’ Group) – URLs related to media info such as stream media or profile’s media, etc. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any info related to profiles, basic credential IDs like email or username or phone number plus some more info depends on applications,

– Contact Short Profile (‘Address Book ‘n’ Contact Information’ Group) – Name, Email ID, Phone number of contacts. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be info locally stored, cached or transferred over the network and belong to this application if it’s social even,

– Messages (‘Message Information’ Group) – Different types of messages, conversations, except for SMS, MMS but including recipient and sender IDs and attachments. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be all message, including SMS, MMS, social and IM messages with or without attachments,

– Call History (‘Call Information’ Group) – Some info about calls you made like phone number, name, date and time, and type of call (missed, placed, outgoing, etc.). This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any call info stored, cached or transferred in plain text or media files,

– Contact Short Profile (‘Call Information’ Group) – Name, Email ID, Phone number of contacts. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any call info stored, cached or transferred in plain text or media files,

– Device Data (‘Device Information’ Group) – Device ID, Device Name, Device OS Name and Version, and jailbroken/root status. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be details about your device,

– Application Configs (‘Log Information’ Group) – Different configuration files created by your app, perhaps app permissions. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any information stored in local or network logs,

– Log Data (‘Log Information’ Group) – Logged any data as a solid file or multipart files. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any information stored in local or network logs,

– Document List (‘Log Information’ Group) – The list of documents stored local or synchronized over the Internet. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any information stored in local or network logs,

– Network Data (‘Application Information’ Group) – Basic info about network used to make a connection, such as a device like IP, connection type. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any info related to the app, app settings, including installed apps or installers,

– Application Configs (‘Application Information’ Group) – Different configuration files created by your app, perhaps app permissions. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any info related to the app, app settings, including installed apps or installers,

– URLs (‘Message Information’ Group) – Different types of URLs referred to your files stored in clouds, profiles, social accounts, media files available online, etc. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be all message, including SMS, MMS, social and IM messages with or without attachments,

– URL Preview (‘Message Information’ Group) – A preview of URL (usually not related to the Stream but typically related to the messages. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be all message, including SMS, MMS, social and IM messages with or without attachments,

– Document List (‘Message Information’ Group) – The list of documents stored local or synchronized over the Internet. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be all message, including SMS, MMS, social and IM messages with or without attachments,

– Document List (‘Account Information’ Group) – The list of documents stored local or synchronized over the Internet. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any info related to profiles, basic credential IDs like email or username or phone number plus some more info depends on applications

Items’ GROUP #2 with average value 7.00 points (7 points of system protection, 7 points of own protection) means data protection levels have following definitions. Frankly talking, compliance but there are publicly known techniques to access the data including forensics one where system protection level means – root/jailbreak is required but not possible without wiping device data, and own protection level means – data stored in system protected place like keychain (no additional protection still).

– Encryption Key (‘Call Information’ Group) – Encryption key found in app data folders, traffic or code of app used to protect your data. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any call info stored, cached or transferred in plain text or media files

Keep in mind if you’re using some Android devices such Samsung, LG or another device with an unlocked or non-locked loader that allow rooting your device without user action, the system level equals 6 points instead of 7. It means your data can be stolen without involving your actions.

Transferred data (Data-in-Transit, DIT).

Transferred data groups include Message Information, Location ‘n’ Maps Information, Credentials Information, Address Book ‘n’ Contact Information, Call Information, Account Information, Media Information, Social Information.
The average DIT value is 5.85 points (5.75 points of system protection and 5.95 points of own protection). It is higher than a typical value (4 points, where’s 4 points of system protection and 4 points of own protection).

Items’ GROUP #1 with average value 6.50 points (6 points of system protection, 7 points of own protection) means data protection levels have following definitions. Frankly talking, protection and privacy issues are still possible but might involve interaction with an app code where system protection level means – MITM prevented or fake certificate importing prevented, but plaintext non-protected traffic is intercepted, and own protection level means – tricks to bypass sniffing (hardly to be or can’t be patched to bypass), including non-common or unsupported protocols.

– Media Data (‘Message Information’ Group) – Any info like images, audios, videos, media notes, etc. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be all message, including SMS, MMS, social and IM messages with or without attachments,

– Contact Media (‘Message Information’ Group) – Full or reduced image of contact. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be all message, including SMS, MMS, social and IM messages with or without attachments,

– Credentials (IDs) (‘Credentials Information’ Group) – Only account IDs like app or 3rd party user IDs including emails, phone number, usernames, etc. (depends on apps). This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any types of credentials including basic (IDs only), passwords, tokens, etc.,

– Credentials (Activation IDs) (‘Credentials Information’ Group) – Two-factor activation code received in messages. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any types of credentials including basic (IDs only), passwords, tokens, etc.,

– Credentials (Tokens) (‘Credentials Information’ Group) – Different tokens used to get access to your account, except for passwords but including app or 3rd party tokens, secret keys, etc. (usually give full access to your account). This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any types of credentials including basic (IDs only), passwords, tokens, etc.,

– Contact Profile (‘Address Book ‘n’ Contact Information’ Group) – Full info about contacts including name email id, phone numbers, gender, linked accounts, geodata, stream and social activity. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be info locally stored, cached or transferred over the network and belong to this application if it’s social even,

– Contact vCard (‘Message Information’ Group) – Contact Profile info stored as vCard. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be all message, including SMS, MMS, social and IM messages with or without attachments,

– Messages (‘Message Information’ Group) – Different types of messages, conversations, except for SMS, MMS but including recipient and sender IDs and attachments. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be all message, including SMS, MMS, social and IM messages with or without attachments,

– Call Stream (‘Call Information’ Group) – Audio or Video call streaming between two or more users. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any call info stored, cached or transferred in plain text or media files,

– Call Details (‘Call Information’ Group) – Full info about calls you made like phone number, name, date and time, duration, type of call (missed, placed, outgoing, etc.), profile, and stream (other phone numbers, messages preview, social news). This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any call info stored, cached or transferred in plain text or media files,

– Call History (‘Call Information’ Group) – Some info about calls you made like phone number, name, date and time, and type of call (missed, placed, outgoing, etc.). This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any call info stored, cached or transferred in plain text or media files,

– Account Details (‘Account Information’ Group) – Full info about your account including account membership, expiration, profile, linked data and account, etc. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any info related to profiles, basic credential IDs like email or username or phone number plus some more info depends on applications,

– Place Details (‘Location ‘n’ Maps Information’ Group) – Any info about public place (city, country, address, contacts) stored in text or media file format. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any geodata from trackers, social networks, GPS, etc.,

– Notes (‘Media Information’ Group) – Different notes stored locally or sync with server including all notes/tasks details. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any data like photo, image, video, audio

Items’ GROUP #2 with average value 5.00 points (6 points of system protection, 4 points of own protection) means data protection levels have following definitions. Frankly talking, data is not available all the time or partially accessed where system protection level means – MITM prevented or fake certificate importing prevented, but plaintext non-protected traffic is intercepted, and own protection level means – bypassed by fake/stolen root certificates.

– GEO Data (‘Location ‘n’ Maps Information’ Group) – Any GEO info stored as plain text referred to the places or tracked activity. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any geodata from trackers, social networks, GPS, etc.,

– Address Data (‘Location ‘n’ Maps Information’ Group) – Home, work or another type of owner address stored by apps. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any geodata from trackers, social networks, GPS, etc.,

– GEO Data (‘Social Information’ Group) – Any GEO info stored as plain text referred to the places or tracked activity. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be info grabbed from 3rd party social networks,

– Place Details (‘Social Information’ Group) – Any info about public place (city, country, address, contacts) stored in text or media file format. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be info grabbed from 3rd party social networks,

– Address Data (‘Social Information’ Group) – Home, work or another type of owner address stored by apps. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be info grabbed from 3rd party social networks

Items’ GROUP #3 with average value 1.00 points (1 point of system protection, 1 point of own protection) means data protection levels have following definitions. Frankly talking, plaintext data is encoded but still ‘as is’ and easily accessed where system protection level means – compressed or encoded by known algorithm (zlib, zip, b64, etc.), and own protection level means – compressed or encoded by known algorithm (zlib, zip, b64, etc.).

– GEO Snapshots (‘Location ‘n’ Maps Information’ Group) – Image-based snapshots of geodata info referred to the places. This data item related to mentioned group meant to be any geodata from trackers, social networks, GPS, etc.

Keep in mind if you’re using out-of-date Android < 7.0, the system level equals 4 points instead of 6. It means your data can be stolen with a crafted preinstalled certificate on the device or if someone makes you install a certificate. Also, if you’re using out-of-date Android < 5.0, the system level equals 2 points instead of 4. It means your data can be stolen without involving your actions.

Privacy Policy

Full application privacy policy is available here.