Following the release of the video chat app ?Google Duo,? the search giant just introduced ?Google Allo,? an AI-enhanced text messaging app.
The Google Allo messenger app comes bundled with unique features like the Smart Reply and even browser-like Incognito modes. The Allo will be competing with the already established WhatsApp, Telegram and Facebook Messenger, among others.
But then, security is a bit of a concern when it comes to Allo. This is precisely because the search giant has altered the security policy, which will enable the company to save all the user data. Sure, there is a way to stop Google from doing it.
However, Google initially noted that the user data shared via Allo will not be temporarily saved in its servers. This means authorities and agencies? requesting Google to share user data for the sake of national security will not get what they want as the conversation or data is not saved. But now, Google has backed off.
An app, which was meant to be all about privacy and security, will no longer be private.?The Verge says Google Allo will ?store all non-incognito messages by default.? The conversation record will apparently persist until you delete them. This is like letting Google access your conversation voluntarily.
In any case, users can avoid Google?s intervention if they opt to use Allo?s Incognito Mode. This mode is encrypted end-to-end.
Google reportedly said the storing of user data will enhance Allo’s smart reply feature. This feature suggests replies in an ongoing conversation. Similar to other machine learning systems, this feature gets better as it learns a particular user?s way of reply, preference etc. This is precisely why Google wants your data to be stored. But the obvious flip-side is the privacy concern.
To top it off, Edward Snowden took to Twitter and warned Google Allo users to stay away from the new messaging app. According to Snowden, Google Allo “records every message you ever send and makes it available to police upon request.”
He also suggested alternatives to the?Google Allo upon request by a fan. According to him, Tor and Signal are the best.
— Edward Snowden (@Snowden) September 21, 2016