Telegram says it has just ’30 engineers’; security experts say that’s . . . not good

Telegram's small engineering team raises security concerns among experts, questioning the safety and encryption of user data.

: Telegram has only about 30 engineers, raising red flags for security experts. Experts highlight the lack of end-to-end encryption by default and insufficient staffing to handle security and moderation. Telegram's vast user base makes it a significant target for hackers, yet it appears to have inadequate cybersecurity measures.

Telegram's founder Pavel Durov revealed the company employs only around 30 engineers and lacks a comprehensive team dedicated to product management. This small team size has alarmed security experts, who argue that it is insufficient to ensure the platform's security, especially considering that Telegram's default chats are not end-to-end encrypted, unlike other messaging apps like Signal or WhatsApp.

Experts also point out that Telegram functions as both a messaging app and a social media platform, accumulating vast amounts of user data. Given its small team, the platform is likely unable to effectively manage legal requests, abuse, or content moderation, making it an appealing target for attackers. Some experts further question the quality of its proprietary encryption and the overall competence of the limited engineering staff.

Security professionals argue that even well-resourced companies struggle to maintain robust security measures, implying that Telegram's situation is far worse. With nearly a billion users, including those from sensitive sectors like cryptocurrency and disinformation networks, Telegram’s minimal cybersecurity staffing is particularly concerning. Experts have long advised against considering Telegram as a truly secure messaging solution, a position now reinforced by Durov's recent admissions.