Ever since WhatsApp released their new terms and conditions, Signal and Telegram have become very popular. You could install the apps and start using them without making any security changes, but to feel safe when using the apps, here are some things you might want to consider.
How to Stay Safe on Telegram
When using Telegram, keep in mind that the non-secret chats don’t use end-to-end encryption. If what you have to talk about with someone is sensitive and you want this protection, you’ll need to enable a secret chat. In these kinds of chat, you can also make your messages self-destruct too.
By tapping on the three-lined menu option and then going to Privacy and Security, you can choose from various security options. For example, in the Privacy section, you can:
- Block other Telegram users
- Hide or show your phone number
- Show or hide your Last seen/Online status.
- Who see’s your profile picture
- Disable a link to your account when forwarding your messages
- Add a Passcode for added security. You can also unlock it with a fingerprint.
- Enable two-step verification
- Terminate all active Telegram sessions sessions
- Your account can be deleted if you’re away for more than the time you specify
- Stop contact sync
- Map preview provider in secret chats
- Link previews in secret chats
Preventing others from adding you to Telegram groups is another great way to stay safe.
How to Keep Your Signal Account Safe
Signal is another option that is getting a lot of attention. If you’re going to give the app a try, here are some security settings you might want to change.
Pin Protect Your Signal Account
By adding a pin to your Signal account, you can prevent someone from accessing your account. By adding a PIN, you help keep your saved info encrypted, so you’re the only person with access to it. Also, changing it from time to time is another great security measure. You can do this by opening Signal and tapping on the dots at the top right.
Choose Settings and got o Privacy.
Swipe down until you reach the Signal PIN section. Tap on the Change your PIN option.
Add Screen Lock to Your Signal Account
In the Privacy section, the very first option on the list is the Screen Lock option.
Below the Screen lock option, you’ll also see the Screen lock inactivity timeout option. If there’s a specific time you want the screen to lock, tap on this option to set your time.
Prevent Other from Taking Screenshots on Signal
There are some things that you just need to be sure won’t end up in the wrong hands. A great feature Signal has and other messaging apps should add is the option to prevent others from taking screenshots of your conversations. If you want to set this security measure up, go to Settings > Privacy and toggle on the Screen security option.
In the image above, besides preventing others from taking screenshots, you can also turn off personalized learning for your keyboard. By turning this option off, what you type won’t be saved, even if it improves the service.
Hide Your location on Signal
When you call someone on Signal, it’s possible that your location can be revealed. You can prevent this from happening by enabling the Always relay calls option. You can do this by going to Settings > Privacy > Communication > Always relay calls.
When it comes to staying safe when using any app, no measure is too little. The more security measure you can use, the better. Signal and Telegram are getting more attention than before, but getting a lot of attention is not always a good thing. What security measures do you take to keep your accounts safe? Let me know in the comments below.
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