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Google Chat as a secure alternative for WhatsApp groups

29 April 2021
Is there a way to chat with your fellow students in a secure, protected environment? There is – it’s called Google Chat. Many people still use WhatsApp groups to exchange information and files with their fellow students. However, the WhatsApp environment is not particularly secure. This enables hackers to easily set up fake accounts and break into these groups, to steal data and files, for example. Google Chat offers a secure alternative, and it has all the features you will ever need.

You can log in to Google Chat using your VU Amsterdam account. Then, as you would with WhatsApp, you can interact with your fellow students by creating a chat group. Google Chat’s secure, protected environment is not readily accessible to anyone who is not officially associated with VU Amsterdam. So not only is there less inappropriate conduct in chat groups, but – if this should happen – the individual or individuals responsible can be more easily identified. Your data and files are also well protected.

As an added bonus, the entire suite of Google Workspace apps are readily available. This enables you to exchange files, send emails, and communicate using the Google Chat feature – in one and the same environment. You can use this feature either in the app or in your browser.

For those seeking a secure way of keeping in touch with others at VU Amsterdam, Microsoft Teams is a good alternative. As a student, you have access to the entire Office 365 software suite, including Teams. This app includes a range of options for staying in touch with each other in a secure way.