Signal is a messaging application that is gaining a lot of fame for its approach to privacy, which is making it an alternative to WhatsApp and Telegram to take into account. Today we are going to explain how to configure Signal to protect your privacy to the maximum, and so you can get the best out of this app.
In essence, Signal offers almost all the main features that other messaging services also give you. However, it has several small details in its configuration that help you better protect your privacy, and these are the ones you have to know if you really want to make a difference between this app and the rest beyond the fact that collect much less data about you than other apps.
Disable the power to take screenshots
Signal has a very useful option when you want the conversation you are having to be more difficult to spread, and that is disable the ability to take screenshots. If you activate this option, the people you talk to will not be able to take screenshots of your conversation on their mobile.
This is something similar to what apps like Snapchat offer. To activate it, you have to go to the Privacy section of the settings. Inside, go to the Access to the application section and turn on the Screen Security option. This is something that you will be able to deactivate whenever you want.
Prevent your keyboard from spying on you
The keyboards that we have installed on our smartphones usually collect everything we write. It’s not that Google, Microsoft or Apple are going to want to know what you say to people, but that they mostly use it to train their predictive keyboard algorithms. However, they are still conversations and writings that are uploaded raw to their servers.
Fortunately, Signal allows you to prevent the keyboard from collecting what you type. For this you have to enable the Incognito keyboard option, which is also in the privacy settings of the app. Your keyboard will continue to collect what you type in the rest of the apps in order to offer you the predictive keyboard option unless you deactivate it in the app for that keyboard itself, but Signal will become an exception.
Protect your Signal account
In Signal’s privacy settings, you can set a PIN as the second authentication method, so that even if someone accesses your SIM, they cannot install Signal and log in with your account. Signal will ask you periodically for that PIN to make it easier for you to memorize it.
Besides this, you can also block registration with your phone number. This means that no one will be able to log into another mobile with your number, as they will need to know your PIN to do so. Of course, for this to be useful you must establish a PIN that cannot be guessed by social engineering. No birthday dates.
Redirect your voice calls
When you make a voice call through an app, the caller’s device establishes a connection with yours using this app. In this process, your IP address may be revealed. And if you are in a dangerous situation where it is vital that no one can know where you are, this can be dangerous. Even if someone accesses the other person’s mobile.
As an extreme measure of privacy, Signal allows you redirect calls through your servers. In this way, when someone makes a voice or video call on their mobile phone, the IP that is revealed to this person is that of Signal, and not yours. This option is in the privacy settings, in the Communication section. You must activate the option Always redirect calls.
Activate the screen lock
Privacy is not only to prevent people on the Internet from accessing your conversations, but it must also protect them from those who may have physical access to the mobile. With that idea, Signal allows you turn on the screen lock option, so that the app is blocked when you turn off the screen, or when it has been turned off for a certain time.
When you do this, if you leave your mobile forgotten and someone finds it, they will not be able to see your Signal conversations, since they will be asked for the lock code that you have established on your mobile, or the biometric unlock. To do this, go to the settings and enter the Privacy section. In her, turn on screen lock option. If you want, below you can set the inactivity time that must pass before it is blocked.
Other options that can help you
Continuing with the options to prevent physical access to your conversations, in the privacy options, you can also prevent the mobile from showing the content of the message in the notifications. To do this, you have to go to the Notifications settings, where you can choose between not showing the content of the text that reaches you, the name of the sender, or neither.
Besides this, you can also do that the people you talk to don’t know when you read their messages or are writing. This can be controlled with the options of Read notifications and Type indicators, which are within the privacy options of the application. It’s a good method so they don’t know when you’re really active.
In addition to all this, if you have reached the point where you are even diverting calls to protect your IP, it is also useful to remember that you can put a made up name as profile name and a profile photo that is anything but your face, so that when you talk to other strangers through Signal, you can protect your anonymity to the maximum.