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Brian Acton is the new CEO of Signal

Ramiro Guzman
8 min read
Brian Acton is the new CEO of Signal – Technology – WebMediums
Signal continues to go strong in the field of telecommunications and social networks

A new CEO of Signal has recently been announced causing a stir over the peculiarity of the matter. This is Brian Acton, nothing more and nothing less than one of the co-founders of WhatsApp.

By and large, Acton was already on the co-founders front of the Signal company. However, it is the first time since 2018 that he has assumed a truly iconic, higher-caliber executive role.

Who is Brian Acton? Meet the new CEO of Signal

Signal decided to give Acton general executive correspondence for the company. It is about a famous 49-year-old computer programmer from Michigan.

He develops from an early stage as a new and intelligent engineer, computer theorist and entrepreneur. Thanks to his programming foundations, he achieved an initial position in the company Yahoo Inc.

In February 2009 he communicated with his partner, Jan Koum, the official launch of WhatsApp. An instant messaging platform that, in a short time, was quickly adopted by the world's population. From there, the growth was exponential.

Brian Acton is the new CEO of Signal – Technology – WebMediums
Brian Acton during one of his multiple appearances before the media

The latest figures released in 2020 confirm that the application exceeds 2 billion users. But, despite the finalized success, both Acton and Koum opted for the sale of WhatsApp to Facebook.

Differences in criteria led to abandoning WhatsApp

The sale of WhatsApp to Facebook not only generated a stir in all the media, but varied controversies. From accusations of "computer monopoly" and related legal cases, the repercussions abounded.

Over time, Acton was faced with conceptual differences over the privacy and advertising policy on the app. Without further ado, he ended his stay on a trip that began in 2009. In other words, he cut ties with the company in 2017.

Fortunately, it did not represent a difficult farewell for the engineer. The most truthful reports show that the businessman's net profit after the sale of shares was around 19 billion dollars.

From WhatsApp to the emergence of "Signal Foundation"

Brian Acton's next big step was the creation of the Signal Technology Foundation. An organization based on a "not-for-profit" legal position that he co-founded with Moxie Marlinspike in 2018.

Brian Acton is the new CEO of Signal – Technology – WebMediums
Brian Acton and Marlinspike are the main exponents of Signal

Signal, the main instant messaging application associated with it, is separated from said company. Today, its mission is still clear and well reflected on its website.

"Contribute to the development of open source privacy technology that protects freedom of expression. Also, that enables secure global communication."

Initially, Marlinspike was the foundation's first Chief Executive Officer (CEO) until his resignation in January 2022. Alternatively, Brian Acton ran despite being a co-founder, but on an interim basis while a replacement was found.

What is Signal? The new project directed by Acton and company

Signal app is the alternative for those who want a separate point from WhatsApp, Telegram or Facebook Messenger. It is an instant messaging proposal that completely revolutionizes open source privacy.

It is important to note that his original idea has existed since 2010 as a program for encrypted messages and calls. Project that was under the tutelage of Moxie Marlinspike.

With the passage of time, the continuous development of the application allowed the addition of instant messaging and group chat. Since July 2014, he is fully dedicated to such a faculty with high qualities in privacy and security, leaving the field of encryption.

Brian Acton is the new CEO of Signal – Technology – WebMediums
Signal has been taking its first steps since 2010

In 2018, it is when the footprint of Brian Acton begins to be noticed, co-founding with the Marlinspike Signal Foundation. An organization that would ensure to continue raising the technological level of the application.

How does Signal work? The double background of his unique action

Signal app enjoys a double background that underpins its functionality. The first of them refers to its end-to-end encryption capacity.

As a curious fact, WhatsApp adopted the modality that Signal uses for privacy purposes in messaging. In effect, it is a methodology that encrypts messages and decrypts them only when they are received by the receiver. The best of the case is that it is present in any conversation started.

Likewise, it is combined with its open source capacity for systems such as Android, iOS or Windows. Because of this, any programmer can enter it and check the transparency of the app.

The second background is the management and operation of the application itself. Like WhatsApp and Telegram, it is not difficult to use being quite intuitive.

It all starts with your download

Signal is available in the main application distribution stores such as Play Store or Apple Store. Upon download, it will require the approval of certain permissions such as your license and access to contacts.

Just adding the phone number that will be associated with Signal will open the way to the creation of the profile. On the other hand, the application works with the creation of a PIN code that will act as an encryption margin for the entire account.

In the long term, that same PIN gives the possibility of blocking or recovering the user's profile. In case of theft or a simple change of mobile, the procedure will be simple.

Brian Acton is the new CEO of Signal – Technology – WebMediums
The operation of Signal is intuitive and easy to manipulate for all its users

Like WhatsApp or Telegram, in Signal you can open a chat with any registered contact. There, the rest will take place like a typical instant messaging conversation where GIFs, emojis, sticker, photos, audios, videos and more cannot be missing.

Advantages that users will enjoy when using the Signal App

Beyond its end-to-end encryption, privacy, and open source, Signal has other features that are considered perks. Within the group of the most outstanding, there are the following:

Messages not stored

Signal raises the bar for competition by incorporating a very useful special feature. In its menu of options regarding chats and conversations, the user can decide how long the messages will be automatically deleted.

The alternatives provided by the application vary from 5 seconds, through 24 hours or after 7 days. Regardless of which one is chosen, it is a fact that messages will not be stored.

Photo editing takes another approach

Signal shares similarities with WhatsApp and Telegram such as sending and editing photos.

In particular, it has a tool where you can cover or blur the face of the person sending. In this way, anonymity will be another key point for security in the application.

Increase the limit for sending large files

Sharing any type of file via instant messaging is common practice. It is evident that platforms such as WhatsApp, Telegram, Twitter or Messenger add it to their repertoire.

But, the difference is that, for the most part, the sending limit does not exceed a certain amount of MB. With Signal, it's a given that that hurdle is left behind, as it handles a larger capacity of up to 2 GB.

Simultaneous use on multiple devices

From the outset, Signal App works with a predominant algorithm to be able to be used in several devices at the same time. It means that it can be flown both on a mobile phone, as a tablet or computer if applicable.

Although each platform of use will vary in the functions offered, the simple fact of chatting will not be a hindrance. Therefore, it represents a great advantage when taking a quality leap to the usefulness of Signal.

Privacy is your highest good

In a comparison with Facebook (Meta), it is known that Mark Zuckerberg's company collects a large amount of data from its users. The influx of this information is used to encourage campaigns, advertising, trends and other issues related to the management of social networks.

But, it is that same property that has unleashed countless controversies related to the privacy of Internet users. Given this, Signal differs in every way, since the only personal data it requires is a telephone number.

Brian Acton is the new CEO of Signal – Technology – WebMediums
Signal simplifies the amount of data it collects from the user unlike other apps

Even the mere fact of allowing access to contacts does not mean that a massive information leak will occur. Rather, it will only establish the starting point for the correct operation of your system.

So... Signal, WhatsApp or Telegram?

Signal is definitely not known to the general community. In hindsight, it has also not reached the path that industry giants such as WhatsApp or Telegram itself have.

As a plus, its extensive end-to-end encryption system will eventually make it the dominant application. While WhatsApp or Telegram still have a lot to offer, the competition will increase dramatically.

The truth is that, in the end, the only beneficiary will be the user regardless of the application of their choice. Such competition will be healthy to reduce Facebook's monopoly and, subsequently, lead to the development of more interesting messaging systems.