How to Delete Signal from your Phone

And Why You Might Want To

A number of people with high digital security and privacy needs are coming to the conclusion that Signal is not doing everything for that them it could. New privacy and security issues keep getting discovered, which we’ll look at below, that leave users vulnerable in one way or another. It’s natural you might want to learn how to delete Signal. Here’s the thing, many apps—Signal included—are designed so if you accidentally delete the app (or have to restore your phone from a backup), you don’t have to start over from scratch.

Apps are built to remember you and your device even after they’ve been deleted. Again, this isn’t a problem per se, but if you want to completely remove an app from your phone, you will need to take a few extra steps to scrub your information cleanly.

This article will show the following information about deleting Signal:

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Signal has a few privacy issues

There are a few reasons why people are deleting Signal and moving to other options, and one is a basic privacy flaw:

All accounts are associated with your phone number.

This leads to a complete unraveling of Signal’s privacy features. If anyone can find your phone number, anyone can find out who you are on the app. A State representative from Washington found this out:

How? Signal revealed his phone number and that phone number was connected to him. Having your phone number associated with Signal could get you into trouble in many parts of the world. Using phone numbers is convenient for helping you and your contacts connect, but it’s still a privacy risk.

Issues with group chats

There have been issues with Signal’s group chat feature for years:

  • You can’t delete a user from a group. Instead you must start a new group with all the original people in it—except the person you don’t want. If you have a large group this could be very cumbersome, especially since you have to tell everyone else about the new group one by one.
  • One user losing their phone in a group chat means a new chat has to be started.
  • Large group chats become unstable and crash.
  • Some users are able to read messages on group chats after they have left.
  • Unauthorized users can be added to groups secretly.

These flaws can become large issues quickly as someone can add a person to a group who is there to cause problems. The troublemaker can’t be removed and a new group has to be started without them. The new group won’t have the previous messages and you’re likely to lose people in the switch over.

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How to delete Signal completely

First, you have to know the difference between uninstalling Signal from your phone and deregistering Signal in order to truly delete it:

  • Uninstalling Signal is when you delete the app from your phone. This is done by either holding your finger down on it until the ‘x’ appears in the top right of the icons and you can tap Delete, or by going into your Settings and deleting it from there (depending on your OS).
  • Deregistering your Signal app is what will actually delete all your account data and delete the registration between your existing account and your phone number.

You have to do both steps. The order doesn’t matter so much, but it’s much simpler to deregister first and then uninstall the app after. Here’s how to deregister with each OS first.

Unregister and delete Signal on iOS:

  1. Open Signal on your phone.
  2. Click on your profile in the upper-left of your screen.
  3. Tap the orange “Delete Account” button.

Tap “Proceed” on the pop up warning.

Now your app is degregistered and you can uninstall the app from your phone just like any other app.

Learn to properly deregister your Signal account in this article so your data is actually deleted…don't just delete the app icon! Click To Tweet

Unregister and delete Signal on Android:

1: Open Signal.

2: Tap on your profile image.

3: Tap on “Advanced”.

4: Tap on the on/off toggle “Signal messages and calls”.

5: Choose “Ok” in the warning to finish the process.

Now uninstall the app and you’re all done!

Unregister and delete Signal on desktop:

1: Open the Signal app on your desktop.

2: Click File > Preferences tab.

3: Click on the “Clear Data” button.

4: Choose the “Clear All Data” option to confirm that you want to delete all data.

Now you can uninstall the app from your machine.

Important: If you set up Signal on your phone and desktop, make sure you’ve followed these desktop instructions to be sure all your data has been removed from Signal’s servers.

Unsure if you’ve forgotten a device? Before you delete the app, go to Profile > Settings > Linked Devices. Unlink them before you delete the app to be on the safe side.

SKY ECC is more secure and more private than Signal

Just because you deleted Signal, it doesn’t mean you still don’t need a secure messaging app to replace it. SKY ECC is the most secure and most private communications app in the world (we’ll even pay you a million dollars if you can crack it) and we think you should give it a try:

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SKY ECC is the most secure phone available for secure and private communications. If you need the utmost in communications security, visit our online store and choose the Apple, Google, or BlackBerry device that’s right for you.