Locking Down Signal: A Guide for Journalists

Remote access and network eavesdropping

Confirm your connection security with safety numbers

A screenshot of Google Voice accepting a registration code for Signal.

Using secondary Signal numbers

A screenshot of Google Voice accepting a registration code for Signal.
Signal registration message received in Google Voice. Source: OpenNews

Registration lock

Disable link previews

Don’t leak keyboard data

iOS users: Keep your Signal history off iCloud

Why you want disappearing messages

Screenshot of “disappearing messages” setting in Signal for iOS.
Screenshot displaying how to turn on Signal’s “disappearing messages” feature in Android.

Device security

Password protect your device

Consider turning on screen lock

A screenshot from Signal, blank except for its logo button that reads, “Unlock Signal.”

Turn on disk encryption

Hide screen in app switcher

Two screenshots, one displaying messages in the app switcher when screen protection is disabled. The other shows no messages.

Notification privacy

Updates and defending against malware

Safest choice: Only use your mobile device

Know the limits of end-to-end encryption

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Martin Shelton

Martin Shelton

Writing about security for journalists, as well as beginners. Principal researcher at @freedomofpress. freedom.press/training