The Signal app is an open-source instant messaging service similar to Telegram and WhatsApp. If you are among those who care about their security, know that this platform is, at the moment, the safest: no more messages read or data shared with third-party services. One of the most critical aspects of Signal is it’s being built on the basic principle of Privacy. This article will see how to best use the Signal app on iPhone or Android, complete with tips and tricks.
Signal: Tips And Tricks
Getting started with this app is very simple: register your phone number, confirm your identity with the OTP, and then set up the basic details of your profile. Before continuing with the article, let’s see what the most important features are:
- Screen lock;
- 2-factor authentication;
- Disable the notification that warns if a contact has subscribed to Signal;
- Disable notifications with message preview;
- Fix a chat at the top;
- Photo editor;
- Ability to blur faces in photos;
- Disappearing messages and images;
- Deactivate the read receipts (the “read” tick);
- Set how many times an attachment can be viewed;
- Delete old messages;
- Keyboard in disguise;
- Security screen;
- Personal notes or saved messages;
- Verify contacts;
- Forward calls;
- Local Backup (Android);
- Dark and light mode;
- Ability to download the app for Desktop (Windows or macOS).
Some of the features are only for Android, so you may not find them on iOS (iPhone). You may, however, find very similar parts – some the same – to other apps.
How To Use The Signal App
This feature ensures that no one can access your chat, despite having access to your phone. Click on the icon that takes you back to your profile at the top left, and go to Privacy. Turn on the Screen lock option and start using your fingerprint to unlock the app.
Enable Record Lock
If an app – or a service – offers this possibility, it’s always good to enable 2-factor authentication. This feature ensures that even if someone has access to the verification code using your number, they cannot access the chat. Signal calls this Record Lock function. Go to Settings> Privacy> turn on record lock. At this point, you can choose a PIN code if you have not already done so. Once set up, make sure you don’t forget it. Otherwise, you won’t be able to set Signal on a new device for the next 7 days.
Disable The Notification That Warns If A Contact Has Subscribed To Signal
Both Telegram and Signal have a rather annoying feature that alerts you when one of your contacts signs up to the app, even creating a chat with them. Signal gives you the option to disable it. Go to Settings> Privacy> Notifications> Events> disable the “Contact has subscribed to Signal” option .
Block Calls Or Messages From A User
There is no way to block someone from joining a group, but you can block a user to prevent them from calling you or texting you. The option is available in the Settings under Privacy> Blocked, add blocked user. You can also block a user from chat conversations.
Disable Notifications With Message Preview
Instant messaging apps often offer the ability to read messages from previews, but not everyone likes this option. Smartphones allow disable previews of all messaging apps, but if you want to disable them only on Signal, follow these steps: Go to Settings> Notifications> Show and choose the option No name or content or Only name.
Star A Chat At The Top
You have an essential group or individual chat: press and hold on to the discussion and click on ” Fix ” to fix that chat at the top. You can select several conversations, classified as “Fixed.”
Before sending an image, you can choose to edit it. The interface is similar to WhatsApp: you can choose to crop it, add text, draw on it, add stickers, etc.
Blur Faces In Images
This extraordinary and specific capacity of Signal permits you to obscure appearances in a picture. One choice accessible in the photograph editorial manager is to empower or cripple the Blur Image choice to naturally recognize the start and hide it or physically obscure the pieces of the photograph you like.
Disappearing Messages And Images
Dissimilar to Telegram, this application offers the chance of empowering the vanishing of messages and pictures to all talks made. Click on a discussion menu and initiate the spring Messages choice. The letters will be consequently erased after the set time. The component is accessible for both gathering and individual talks. When you communicate something specific, it will therefore begin a commencement, and when the time is up, the sent message – or picture – will be erased.
Disable The Read Receipts
When you can’t or don’t want to, immediately reply to a message, but letting the other person know through the famous “blue check” can be not very nice. On WhatsApp, Signal also allows you to disable read receipts, go to Privacy and activate theRead receipts option.
Set One-Time Viewing Of A Photo
If you send sensitive content, you prefer to be viewed only once. You can choose this setting before sending a message. When you select the file to send, click the icon at the bottom left with the infinity sign in the center and set it to 1x: in this way, after the message is displayed, it will be automatically deleted.
Delete Old Messages
To delete all messages from individual chats and group chats in bulk, Signal offers the option “Clear chat history” in the Privacy section. You can also set a conversation length limit, automatically deleting messages as they become “old.”
Keyboard In Incognito
Any keyboard used on a smartphone automatically collects data. If you want to be sure that nothing is “collected,” you can choose the anonymous keyboard offered by the app. It essentially sends a request to disable any custom data tracking.
Anyone looking at your phone might peek at a message by previewing it when you switch between apps. When you enable this setting from Privacy, every time you switch from one app to another, a blue screen with the logo will appear instead of the message preview. It is also a way to make sure no one can take screenshots or screen recordings of the app. It is a standard and straightforward method to remove data from your phone without leaving a trace.
Personal Notes Or Saved Messages
The Signal app adds you as a contact in the app: if you go to the connections and look for “Personal Notes” in the search bar, it will appear in the list. Click on it and send or forward messages to yourself.
Check The Contacts
To make sure that the contacts who write to you are using the Signal app, click on the contact name and go to Look at the Security Code: it will show you a list of codes that should be the same on both numbers.
Your IP address can be detected using “multimedia streams when you call or video call.” On Signal, the rings are P2P, that is, from person to person, so if someone wants to know your location, they can do it. And this is where the call forwarding feature comes into play. Go to Privacy> Calls and activate the Always forward calls feature. Once done, everything will go through the Signal server, which will hide your IP. The only downside is a reduction in call quality.
Local Backup (Android)
The biggest drawback of Signal is that there is no Cloud backup for obvious reasons. Since many of us care about keeping our chats, an option to make a local backup is available on Android. Go to Settings> Chat and Media> Chat Backup: click the circle to activate it. At this point, you will be shown a code to copy and paste between the notes or pin on a sheet, the old way. Remember to do this because you will be prompted for the code every time you want to restore your data.
Light Or Dark Mode
You can set the app to use the system default theme or choose between light or dark modes. Go to Settings> Appearance> Theme. This section also allows you to change the language.
Download Signal On Desktop (Windows Or MacOS)
Signal offers a basic version of the desktop app for Windows and macOS. You can also chat independently of the phone, which means that even when the latter is turned off or has no network, like for Telegram. Once installed, the app will show you a QR code, which you need to scan from the app by going to Settings> Paired devices: click here to start watching the code. These are the main functions of this most used instant messaging application. In the settings, you will find other options to customize Signal further.
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