“Snowden” — a movie for everyone, including those who have nothing to hide

Today, “Snowden” hits the big screen in Germany. We were able to watch Oliver Stone’s highly anticipated movie about the famous whistleblower last week, and we think it turned out very well, to say the least.

In summer 2013, when working at the NSA, Edward Snowden uncovered the largest mass-surveillance program of the world. Stone’s movie skillfully recounts the events surrounding what has since become known as the “Snowden revelations”. The movie shows what dramatic consequences Snowden was willing to accept in order to expose the dark deeds the intelligence services were engaged in. Without his intervention, we would probably to this day be unaware of the extent to which mass surveillance and targeted spying on politicians, business leaders, and human-rights activists was conducted.

“Snowden” was well received by the political press, too. The New York Times and the Washington Post praise Stone for managing to make a complex social issue graspable for all audiences.

Theatrical release: Germany, September 22 | Switzerland, October 6 | Trailer

Movie ticket giveaway

In cooperation with Universum Film and Pathé Films, we are giving away 30 × 2 tickets for “Snowden” (valid in Germany or Switzerland). To enter the giveaway, simply subscribe to the feed “Snowden” in the Threema Channel: First, add the Threema ID *THREEMA to your contacts; then, send the text “Snowden” and you automatically enter the contest.The deadline is September 30, 2016. All decisions are final. Good luck!

Job opening @ Threema: iOS developer

For the development of our iOS apps, we are looking for a motivated software engineer (m/f) to join our team. It's required to have relevant qualifications and experience in developing complex apps. The job description can be read here.

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After new surge in popularity, Threema goes on sale for half the price

In the last few days, many new users joined Threema. The daily downloads have skyrocketed when WhatsApp announced that it will start sharing its users’ data with Facebook. Learn more…

With this special sale, we aim to bring attention to data-privacy issues and help indecisive users to switch to Threema.

Download Threema here

Tell others about the special sale: use our email template

The 50% discount sale ends on Thursday evening, September 8.

Threema Work gets a new management cockpit

Threema Work, the chat app for organizations, has been successfully launched.

Now, Threema Work gets a new and intuitive management cockpit which allows system administrators to conveniently manage and control Threema Work via the web browser.

With the new management cockpit for Threema Work covers the following features:

  • Manage licenses and users
  • Define and edit credentials
  • Update the number of users and renew subscriptions
  • Acquire additional subscriptions
  • Set an in-app logo
  • Access Threema Gateway credits
  • Request support
  • Get an overview of the active users*
  • Option to define a custom support URL*

Existing Threema Work customers benefit from the update free of charge. Additional features are already in development.

Check out the new management cockpit by logging in and selecting an active subscription.

*Available soon

Another diminishment of privacy: WhatsApp shares users’ phone numbers with Facebook

It’s official: WhatsApp shares the phone numbers of its users with Facebook. This marks another significant diminishment of users’ privacy. Once again, the saying holds true: “If you’re not paying for it, you’re the product.”

Is there a way to opt out of this data sharing? No. While it seems to be possible to prevent the use of said data for ad targeting on Facebook, “that data will still be shared”, as TechCrunch points out.

Threema, on the other hand, doesn’t require users to provide their phone numbers (or any other personal information, for that matter). Hence, it’s possible to use Threema completely anonymously. If you do decide to synchronize your contacts, their phone numbers will be transferred in hashed form and only matched while in volatile memory, not stored. Data sharing is ruled out.

Due to its rigorous data restraint, Threema provides the highest level of privacy protection out of all popular mobile instant messengers. Decentralized management of groups and contact lists, the option to use it anonymously, and all-inclusive end-to-end encryption render Threema the best choice for privacy-conscious users.

Many users seem to have recognized the signs of the times and are switching to Threema. Over the Weekend, the daily downloads of the Threema app have more than tripled (see chart).

Image quick select, visual overhaul, and improved usability (Android)

Threema for Android now features image quick select *, which allows to send images in a snap. Simply tap the paperclip icon to invoke the attachments popup, and you're presented with your gallery's most recent images and animated GIFs. Select one, and you're done. Should you have trouble finding the right image, tap and hold a thumbnail, and it will expand to a preview of the image. If you prefer to, you can disable image quick select completely in Settings > Chats.

Furthermore, design and usability of the chat view have been overhauled and unified. For example, captions are no longer shown as overlay, they are appended below images, and no matter the format, all media types are now neatly displayed in the same manner.

Besides the chat view, many other areas of the app have been improved, both visually and in terms of usability. We think you'll like Threema 2.82 for Android.

*requires Android 4.1 or higher

Update 2.7.3 for iO

iOS users get a new Threema version. The update 2.7.3 brings the following changes:

  • Support adding received passes to Wallet
  • Bug fixes

Strong arguments against mass surveillance

Due to the proposed revision of the BÜPF (Federal Law on the Surveillance of Post and Telecommunications Traffic), Switzerland is in the midst of a heated debate about so-called “preventive surveillance”. In light of this, we asked the readers of our blog – as part of a small competition – to present their arguments against mass surveillance.

We have received a large number of submissions, and we would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who participated! The five entries that convinced us the most will receive a print edition of George Orwell’s prophetic book “1984”. (The winners have already been notified.)

One concern that was frequently expressed is the self-censorship that mass surveillance might lead to. Another one is the inherent potential for misuse of the collected data.

Have a look at our compilation of the strongest arguments against mass surveillance!

Threema 2.81 for Android: Protect chats from prying eyes with Private Chats

Threema is known for its dedication to privacy. It is – and always has been – possible to protect access to the app with a PIN. Now you can also protect individual chats from prying eyes. Simply mark a confidential conversation as Private Chat, and your PIN or fingerprint will be required to access it. Private Chats can also be hidden from the chat list. This way, full confidentiality can be maintained, say, while you're showing someone Threema’s (other) cool features. In line with this, push notifications for Private Chats don't include message contents. Learn more

With Threema 2.8.1 for Android, you can add captions to images, files, and GIFs. The provided text will appear as overlay at the bottom of the preview. When sending multiple images at once, each image can be labelled individually. This is a neat way to add a comment to your images, files, and GIFs.

The 2.81 update also includes some performance improvements and bug fixes.

The wait is over, Threema 1.6.0 for Windows Phone is now available. This update introduces a new gallery for easier media management, message and media forwarding to other contacts and groups, and the option to save media files directly to OneDrive. On top of that, the update includes general improvements and numerous bugs fixes increasing stability and performance of the app.

For all the details, please visit the change log.

Threema for iOS now supports text formatting

Threema 2.7.2 for iOS is now available. This update supports text formatting. You can now spice up your messages by writing words in bold, italic, and strikethrough type. To do this, simply enclose a word or a sentence in the appropriate character: * bold *, _ italic _, and ~ strikethrough ~.

Additionally, the update contains performance improvements and fixes some bugs.

Contest: What are the best arguments against mass surveillance?

We are looking for the best arguments against mass surveillance. Lay out your argument and, with a bit of luck, win one of five copies of the book “1984”, George Orwell’s prophetic vision of a surveillance state.

Enter the contest here.

The best arguments will be published anonymously.

With this contest, we aim to raise awareness of the negative effects and the futility of so-called “preventive surveillance”, and we want to make a contribution to the ongoing debate about the BÜPF referendum.

Threema for organizations: Threema Work

Threema Work is the instant messenger for organizations that care about data privacy and security but don't want to compromise on comfort and reliability.

Instant messaging is becoming increasingly important in business communication. Not only do co-workers frequently communicate using instant messengers; it's common that instant messengers are used for communicating with business partners and clients, too. The messengers that are employed might (or might not) be suitable for private purposes, but most often they don't comply with legal data-protection requirements and hence don't meet professional standards. Corporate solutions are rarely implemented because they are too expensive or not straightforward enough or hard to use. With Threema Work, Threema makes its famous security, ease of use, and metadata restraint available to organizations. This way, what is confidential stays confidential, and personal and professional communication is separated.

Strict separation of personal and professional communication

With regard to smartphones, many organizations have adopted their mobile strategy to Bring Your Own Device (BYOD), allowing staff to use their own phones for work matters. The separation of personal and professional communication poses a challenge to this practice. A straightforward solution is to use a designated channel (i.e., app) for professional communication. As a stand-alone app, Threema Work can provide a strict separation of personal and professional communication, and it offers the top-grade security, hallmark metadata-restraint, and intuitive user experience the Threema app is famous for, along with handy features and useful services.

Effortless distribution and integration into existing MDM/EMM systems

The open distribution model allows effortless cross-platform distribution of the Threema Work app to Android and iOS devices. You simply unlock any number of users and distribute the credentials to the intended users, without having to be concerned about which operating system a user's device runs on. Therefore, the open distribution model is also suited for organizations that don't have an MDM/EMM system in place. All the same, Threema Work can be easily integrated into existing MDM/EMM systems, allowing for automated remote configuration of the app. This provides full control over how Threema Work is set up on the users' devices and relieves users from setting up the app manually.

Why Threema Work?

Threema Work is a comprehensive and inexpensive solution for organizations to make mobile communication secure and compliant with data-privacy standards. These are the benefits:

  • Threema Work provides a strict separation of personal and professional communication.
  • Threema Work offers the top-grade security, hallmark metadata-restraint, and intuitive user experience the Threema app is famous for.
  • Thanks to the open distribution model, the Threema Work app can be easily distributed to the intended users.
  • Purchased logins can be passed on (e.g., if staff or device changes occur).
  • Threema Work can be integrated into existing MDM/EMM systems, but it can as well be used without one.
  • Threema Work users benefit from premium support services, SLA plans, app customization (e.g., your logo in the app), and annual Threema Gateway credits.
  • Threema Work's different service packages have any organization's needs covered.
  • Threema Work is a European product which is created and maintained in Switzerland.

The scope of services depends on the choice of the service package.

For a limited time we’re offering a special introductory price on Threema Work Business packages.

To learn more, please visit https://work.threema.ch/.

Threema 2.8 for Android: text markup, performance improvements, and bug fixes

Threema 2.8 for Android is now available. Among other improvements, this update introduces support for text formatting. You can now spice up your messages by writing words in bold, italic, and strikethrough type. To do this, simply enclose a word or a sentence in the appropriate character: * bold *, _ italic _, and ~ strikethrough ~. Support for this feature on iOS and Windows Phone is in the works.

The 2.8 update also includes various bug fixes and performance improvements. For all the details, please consult the change log.