It’s not wise to park your car without locking the door. Just like it’s not prudent to use the bandsaw without strapping on safety goggles. Or storing stacks of cash in your mailbox.

The pastime of making phone calls, sending texts or email messages is no different. If you leave a vital something of yours unprotected, people will try and take it. More often than not, they’ll succeed, because what’s stopping them? Nothing. Exactly.

So why not put something in place that will stop these vandals, these heartless hackers, from stealing and bastardizing what belongs to you? It’s smart. And according to a new post by Gizmodo‘s William Turton, this is the best app to do so — aka “encrypt” your personal communication.

Here’s how the good lad puts it:

Signal is pretty much the holy grail of encrypted messaging apps. It’s free, easy to use, and most importantly, it’s design and encryption protocol make it the most secure messaging app on the market. The app syncs with your address book and allows you to instantly call or message anyone else who also has the Signal app. The creator of Signal, a cryptographer named Moxie Marlinspike, developed the Signal encryption protocol which has received universal praise from computer security experts.

When you’re name is Moxie Marlinspike, anything you touch turns to … something special? We’re not sure, to be honest. We just wanted to point out that name so you can drink it up and realize how exception it is.

Back to brass tacks, though.

While Turton does indeed put Signal up on a pedestal, he does follow it up with one super convenient truth: Apple iMessage — the one that comes standard on all iPhones? Yeah, it’s pretty damn good too (with a caveat).

Again, Turton:

Apple’s default messaging app is also encrypted, but it needs to be replaced, encryption expert and professor at John Hopkins university Matthew Green told Gizmodo. The encryption that iMessage uses is one Apple cooked up themselves, and it doesn’t follow all of the best practices. In fact, a team of researchers led by Green recently found an exploit that would allow a sophisticated attacker to decrypt photos and videos sent over the service. While it’s not the absolute best, its still pretty good, Green said. He predicts Apple will move to change their protocol to something like Signal, but with over a billion devices using iMessage, that’s easier said than done.

He mentions Whatsapp too, a service that was recently acquired by, gulp, Facebook. He put it one rung lower on the ladder from Signal, and right above iMessage. One service he says never to use? Telegram. It reportedly uses encryption that is weak and buggy.