Is it possible to spy on Telegram? Valid methods and options

 

Is it possible to spy on Telegram? Valid methods and options

You may have ever had the intention or the desire to spy on someone on Telegram: to know what they do, what they write or when they connect or even what they speak. Just because it can be done in some way doesn't mean you should, whoever the person involved is. Not your partner or your friends or your employees. But if you have wondered whether or not it is possible to spy on Telegram or if you are worried that they might spy on you, we see what options there are or what the main risks are.


The first thing to keep in mind is that spying on Telegram is possible but it is not recommended to do so and you can get into a lot of trouble. Telegram claims to be a private and secure tool and therefore the methods can be much more complicated than in other similar applications.


It is possible that many people have wanted to spy on Telegram to control what their minor children do but in that case we will not resort to spyware but there are many parental control apps that allow us to do this without having to be illegal . We share practically everything through messaging applications and it is an intrusion on privacy. Someone may not mind sharing everything but many users do.


Encryption and security

As explained from the Telegram page itself, there are two layers of encryption in the application: a server-client encryption in private or group cloud chats. And secret chats that add an extra layer of client-client encryption. All are encrypted: messages, multimedia or files. Encrypted with 256-bit symmetric AES encryption, RSA 2048 encryption and Diffie-Hellman secure key exchange, according to Telegram's own help page.


AES encryption stands for Advanced Encrypton Standard and is a common algorithm in organizations or "governments". What this encryption allows is that keys of 128, 192 or 256 bits in length are generated. In this case, Telegram is committed to the greater length that would ensure privacy and secrecy in our chats.


End to end

Secret chats have an encryption key so that man-in-the-middle attacks do not occur and you must ensure that the key you see in your chat matches the secret chat options of the person you are speaking with. This establishes a secure end-to-end connection that does not allow anyone, even being connected to the same WiFi network, to intercept messages that are fully encrypted.


It protects you so that your data is not leaked or left in the hands of another person but it does not protect you if someone is using spyware on your mobile phone or on your computer or if someone takes your mobile phone and opens the application directly.


If you manage to decrypt Telegram messages, you have a prize: the application offers up to 300,000 euros for decrypting other people's messages since it is considered something practically impossible and we should not worry excessively about this. It can? Yes, through methods other than Telegram but it will be very difficult to do so.


Is it legal?

No, of course not. It can mean up to one and four years in prison. Spying on Telegram is covered, as in the case of WhatsApp, in article 197 of the Penal Code and it is considered a crime of discovery and release of secrets, so the desire to do so should be removed. In the event that the person you are spying on is your partner, the law is even harsher if you decide to spy on Telegram: “The penalty will be imposed in its upper half when the acts have been committed by the spouse or by a person who is or has been united to him by a similar emotional relationship, even without coexistence "


There are many judicial decisions that fail in favor of the affected person , especially in case of harassment or espionage of the couple, either on Telegram or in other similar applications. The consequences are very serious and it will not be worth “consulting” anyone's Telegram, be it your partner or your friend.


Sentenced 14 months in jail

In August 2019 in A Coruña a woman faced 14 months in prison for spying on a friend's WhatsApp. Although it was the WhatsApp app and not Telegram, the operation and the "law" applied is the same. In this case, the woman took the mobile phone of an acquaintance to read the conversations she had with the lawyer of her ex-husband, from whom she was divorcing. It happened in Oleiros (A Coruña) and the defendant read confidential information from the lawyer in addition to sending the conversations to herself through her email account. For this reason, she was sentenced to 14 months in prison and 1,500 euros in moral damages as compensation.


Two years in jail and 3,240 euros

Also in 2018, the First Section of the Alicante Court imposed two years in prison in Elche for spying on his wife. According to the Efe agency, the Alicante Court imposed two years in prison and a fine of 3,240 euros for the crime of discovery and revelation of secrets for spying on WhatsApp and resetting the mobile. In addition, the 32-year-old defendant is prohibited from approaching or communicating by any means with the victim for four years from the resolution of the sentence. According to the aforementioned medium, he took advantage of his "computer knowledge" to install a program that followed his wife's conversations on WhatsApp and even took photographs of those messages to demonstrate alleged infidelity.


But if you are simply concerned about whether they can spy on you or not, if there is someone who may be spying on you , we see what options there are or how you can protect yourself. In case you discover that this has happened, you have the possibility to report it to the authorities.


Telegram rules

Beyond the illegality that it supposes, the conditions of Telegram make it clear that you must use the application correctly. For example, you should not contact strangers. “People generally don't like to  be contacted by strangers  - so they will report you if they find your messages annoying. Please only contact people if you are sure they are expecting messages from you. The same applies to inviting people to unwanted groups or channels ”. Of course, you should not spy or harass by watching when it connects, etc.


Apps that promise to spy

As in the case of spying on WhatsApp, many applications on Google Play are sold as miraculous to know what someone is talking about, what they are doing, etc. Most not only don't work but are dangerous and can fill your phone with malware.


A Google search is enough to find hundreds of applications or services that promise to spy on Telegram for free or for a low price. But in most cases these are scams. Not only will you be putting yourself in danger, risking penalties of up to four years, but you will also be putting your money and your mobile phone in danger by installing something unreliable and not recommended.


They ask us for our data, access to Telegram, they ask us to pay and subscribe to a premium service that promises us to know everything about another person, access their photographs or contacts or consult private data. But it does not work. It can be very expensive for us and we will not achieve anything of what we intend to do with this.


Specialized spy and malware software

Although the specialized applications that you will find in Google Play or in the App Store are useless, it is useful to use specialized spyware although it requires a minimum of knowledge for its use and, as we say, it is totally illegal and inadvisable but we explain how it works by if you need to detect it or if you think someone is trying to spy on what you do on Telegram.


It can be used on a computer or mobile phone. If you are worried if they can spy on Telegram and be reading you, know that this is the most common and possible option to do it: applications or programs work in the background and record everything you do without you noticing, making someone record your calls or read your messages remotely. The "advantage" is that installing this type of software implies having direct access to the mobile phone, so if you do not lend the phone to anyone or the computer, you will not have any problem as long as you use sufficient antimalware protection.


The downside is that we do not always have control over the devices we use: a shared computer at work, applications that we have downloaded and accepted permissions without reading them in depth ... That is why we must always maintain security standards, install an antivirus, avoid downloading applications , do not open emails from strangers, etc.


Detecting this spyware is tricky. They are applications like Spyzye, for example, that have a monthly cost and offer us access and control everything a person does with the mobile phone: applications, browsing history, calls, messages, geolocation, etc. They usually work in the background without being detected but you can get rid of them if you suspect that you are being spied on: just delete everything on your phone. Save your photos or important data and factory reset your phone. This will make this spyware used to spy Telegram disappear from the device.


Beware of public networks

Although Telegram messages are protected and encrypted, connecting to public WiFi networks may mean that the network itself has been hacked and access to all your content either on the phone or on the computer. They cannot access the conversations since they are end-to-end encrypted but there may be some type of malware that is capable of recording your notifications, for example, or recording the keys you press and thus getting to know what you said in the conversation if you are using the computer and the web version of it.


Telegram Web

The easiest way to spy on Telegram is with Telegram Web through your carelessness. The advantage is that it is in your hand that this does not happen. We usually use web versions of applications on any device because it is much more comfortable for us than using the phone to reply to any message ... that's why we use Telegram on the computer. And usually on the computer at work, at the university, at the library or in any other public place. We leave it open, we forget to close it and anyone can read the messages we send or receive. It is a simple way to spy on Telegram because of us.


The first thing we must do to prevent this from happening is to log out whenever we stop using a computer on which we have used telegram:


  • Open the web.telegram.org page
  • Find the three lines in the upper right corner
  • Go to the Settings screen
  • Go to the end of the web page
  • Tap on the "Close session" section

Always do it. Both on the computer you have at home if you distrust a family member or roommate, and on the computer you use at work, at school or anywhere else if it is not properly protected. If you have doubts, you can also check the active sessions and close them remotely.

Active sessions

If you have questions about whether you have left something open on a computer or device, you can check it from Telegram to close it as soon as possible:

  • Open the app on your phone
  • Tap on the three lines in the upper left corner and go to Settings
  • Look for the Privacy and security option
  • Tap on "Active Sessions"
  • You will see all sessions: time, location and device
  • Tap on "Close all other sessions"
  • Confirm in the pop-up window

This will ensure that nothing is open and they can be reading every message you receive or send remotely from a computer or phone that you have left open.

Privacy

Although it is not considered "spying on Telegram", there are some options that you can modify in the application if you want to improve privacy and prevent someone from knowing more about you. You can hide your photo, your phone number ... As there are groups and public channels, we must take much more care of our data so that no one knows about us or you will risk someone knowing your number, for example.

You can follow a few simple steps to choose who can see what. For example, who can see your phone number or your profile picture.

  • Go to the Telegram application on the mobile phone
  • Tap on the lines in the upper left corner
  • Look for the Privacy and security section
  • You will see that there are several options
  • Blocked
  • Phone number
  • Last time and online
  • Profile picture
  • Forwarded messages
  • Calls
  • Groups and channels

Go tapping on the different options to manage who can see what. Generally, you will find two or three options:

  • Everyone
  • My contacts
  • No one

This way you can prevent anyone from seeing your phone number or your last time . If you configure that nobody sees the time you have connected, you will not be able to see it either. In the case of the profile photograph, you will not be able to choose not to be seen by anyone but you will have two options: "All" or "My contacts". Always choose "My Contacts" so that no one else sees it or knows more about you than you really want them to know.

It is also recommended that you block who can add you to groups and channels:

  • Follow the steps above
  • Tap on "Groups and Channels"
  • Choose between the two options
  • Everyone
  • My contacts
  • Check "My contacts"

This way, people you don't know will not be able to add you to groups and they will not be able to spy on Telegram or hear from you. You will prevent them from being able to contact you or bother you if you do not know those people.

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