Signal only links your phone number to you. Telegram links your name, number, contact list, and user ID. Both have significantly less info on you than WhatsApp, which collects info like ad data and physical location.
Unlike other apps, you need to opt-in to Telegram's "secret chat" to send messages only decryptable by the recipient. However, it only applies to messages between two devices; group messaging is saved to the platform's cloud.
While WhatsApp lets you opt-in to cloud storage, Signal doesn't have the option to save chat history to the cloud. Based on its default to saving messages to the cloud, Telegram is less "secure" than both. Of the three, only Signal is fully open-source.
Telegram is mostly funded by social media billionaire Pavel Durov. Signal, now funded by the nonprofit Signal Foundation, got $50 million in backing from WhatsApp cofounder Brian Acton.
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So, Should You Switch From WhatsApp?
It depends on what you want from your messaging platform. Whether you're looking for more privacy, better security, or to break ties from Facebook, the key is understanding what encrypted messaging can and can't do to protect your data.