Signal Messaging App
Introduction to Signal
Signal is the Instant Messaging App that also uses Voice Call Over Internet Protocol. It was developed by Signal Foundation and Signal Messenger LLC in 2014. The signal foundation was made by Brian Acton who was the fellow benefactor of WhatsApp Inc. And this app is the follower of RedPhone and Textsecure. This app allows users to send files, images, videos, and voice messages and also Video call functionality to a single user and group. The Signal Foundation released the stable version of Signal 5.0.9 to Android on 08th of January, 2021, and iOS version 5.1 on 10th of January, 2021. Also available for a desktop version that supports Windows, Linux, and Mac operating systems.
The Signal App is a FOS Software (Free Open-Source Software ) that uses the General Public License Version 3. They use E2EE encryption which only uses the user’s phone number as a Unique Identifier for secret messaging service. What is E2EE in this app?. Signal servers do not have the ability to look up your chats, calls, files, images, and other documents. It is only manageable by senders and shared users. But On an Android device, It can be used instead of the default messaging app without E2EE encryption with the non-signal users.
Key Features of Signal App
This App has features such as voice and video calls over the Internet protocol, Instant Messenger, Group chat with E2EE encryption just like WhatsApp. But there are some unique features, unlike WhatsApp. For Example, The group chat rooms limited to 1000 people can participate. But anyone can’t add your phone number to their chat rooms. So they have to invite you to join the group. Otherwise, you can’t join any group without a group link or QR Code. There is an additional feature to set a timer from 5 seconds to 01 weeks with the message. That will automatically fade from both the senders and the receiver’s chat rooms. This app has the ability to blur the face in photos. And It featured with one time viewable media. So once you viewed you will be removed from the chat room.
Privacy of Signal App
If you want to sign up on Signal we need the phone number. So phone number is an essential part of this app account. Once you signed up, this app automatically sends the notification to your contact list who are already signed up with this app. How does this app know our contact list? is it access our contact list that is saved on our mobile phone?. The short answer is YES, Once you signed up it asks permission to access your contact.
The question may arise, is this app a privacy-focused end-to-end encrypted application? Yes, Don’t need to worry about your contact list. Signal Server doesn’t store your contact list for a long time. It just uses to make notifications that tell your contacts who already use this tap, Now you are on this app. It just helps to boost your communication. After sending the notification it automatically deletes everything such contact list.
Once you don’t want to access your contact, you can cancel the permission to access your contact after signed up and Revoke the permission from the Smartphone Setting. If you cancel the permission you should wait for your friends to contact you. Otherwise, you have to let your contacts know via another messaging app or any other medium by sending a message. Or use another way that signal offers to search your friends’ list using their phone number by the “Find User” option.
Signal profiles end-to-end encrypted by unique profile key. It can be accessed by an authorized user. Authorized users mean contacts stored in your phonebook, people who create conversations, and shared groups. Let’s take look at an example of a real-world postal mail service. In the envelope, there are names of sender and receiver available for navigating the mail to the right people. But This app encrypts those names too with E2EE encryption. But also encrypt metadata with E2EE, unlike WhatsApp. If you cancel the access permission, No one knows you are using this app. That is only a drawback if you cancel the permission to access your contact. Until you get trust with this app, just begin work without contact access permission.
There are lots of privacy options and settings that make a safer journey with the Signal App. Such as, the user can Lock this App with passcode and biometrics, and Two Factor Authentication. This App does not allow to take screenshots within the app. This App allows you to remove the Read Receipts on your chat room messages that protect you from automatically place a green tick mark. Once you off this feature, the message only shows delivered still not read indication to sender. It allows the user to write down their thoughts and ideas through Notes to self that keeps our self notes and ability to share. There is a function called incognito keyboard mode, that prevents the user from keyloggers.
Signal App also gives rich features like WhatsApp. Such as Turning off-link preview, Turn off typing indicators, emojis, stickers and more.