Berty is NOT war-ready (yet).

Paris, March 1st.

When Russia invaded Ukraine, Berty was downloaded as a “war-proof” messenger alternative. Berty should not yet be used as such. It is our duty to be extremely transparent about Berty’s state of development in this context. This is a serious set of circumstances and there are human lives involved.

For two major reasons, it’s sadly too early for Berty to be deployed for crisis use.

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Berty Protocol has not yet been audited.

This project is run by a small team of humans. And as you know, humans are prone to making mistakes. Although we have put immeasurable caution and effort into building a secure, decentralized communication protocol, it is possible that there are still unidentified vulnerabilities.

We are considering an audit that the community will fund in the near future. To be meaningful, this audit must be independently conducted and verified.

Berty V1 is still under active development.

In late 2021, we published Berty unannounced on the App Store and Play Store to test out the release process. As a result, we uncovered several stability problems on 4G networks (cf our latest newsletter ). We decided to postpone our public launch announcement to a future date.

There’s a significant chance that, depending on their 4G provider, users will encounter inconsistent behavior adding contacts and exchanging messages, or their app may be prone to crashing. We have identified the cause and are actively working on it. The next update should address it.

There are also device performance concerns that would particularly affect users in adverse use environments. Berty v1 consumes the battery quickly. We’re working hard on this, recognizing that battery life is critical in these scenarios. In the meantime, please keep this issue in mind if your access to electricity is limited.

If you are looking for a secure messaging alternative, we recommend using Signal, despite its lack of p2p or offline communication functionality.

How to help

Since all our work is public & free & open source, everyone can contribute to get things done faster.

We encourage you to:

Concluding notes

This dramatic event reinforces the belief that we are right to build a future-proof messenger for all adverse communication situations. We wish to extend our sympathy to everyone who has been affected by this situation, particularly those who have experienced violence, loss, or displacement.

Our goal is to provide the necessary tools to enable communication in any situation. War is one of them. We regret that despite already having Bluetooth communication, Berty is not yet ready for immediate use, but our duty is to be transparent and honest with you. Please continue to use Berty for development and experimentation. We’ll keep you updated in the newsletter and on social media about Berty’s limitations and recommended use.

Take care.