Telegram Leaks Users' IP Addresses

Telegram Leaks Users' IP Addresses
The Telegram desktop app has revealed the location of many of its users.

(CCM) — Telegram's reputation has taken a massive hit following revelations that calls and messages originating from its desktop app have not been as secure or private as its users thought.

Dhiraj Mishra, a security researcher, has discovered that the desktop Telegram app leaks users public and private IP addresses during voice calls, thanks to the peer-to-peer nature of its network, according to an Engadget report.

The mobile version of the Telegram app allows users to turn off the peer-to-peer functionality, and therefore maintain their privacy. But the desktop version does not give users this option. That means that using the desktop version could reveal a user's location and leave them vulnerable to network attacks, the report adds. Mishra was awarded a security bounty of over $2,000 for discovering the flaw.

Telegram has released new versions of its desktop app which fix the issue by enabling users to disable peer-to-peer calling or by limiting its usage to contacts.

Telegram was originally launched in 2013 to enable users to hold conversations which could not be accessed by government security agencies. In March 2018, Telegram revealed that it had 200 million monthly active users. This compares with rival messaging app WhatsApp's more than 1.5 billion monthly active users.

The service has faced censorship or bans in some countries such as Russia and Iran because it is alleged that it facilitates illegal activities such as terrorism and the dissemination of propaganda.

Image: © Telegram.