Signal is the encrypted messaging app that is used by many privacy conscious individuals on various platforms, but the Signal app defaults to showing a message preview on the locked screen of an iPhone or iPad, which may be convenient but it’s not particularly private. Given that Signal is typically sought out by users specifically for privacy and/or security purposes, some users may wish to have the Signal message previews not show up on the locked screen of an iPhone or iPad.
This article will show you how to hide the Signal message previews from the locked display of an iPhone or iPad. Signal users will be able to choose to have the message previews display on the locked screen when the device is unlocked, or to never show the Signal message previews at all regardless of the lock status.
How to Hide Signal Message Previews from Locked Screen of iPhone or iPad
The setting to disable Signal message previews is in the same location on any iOS device that has the app installed:
- Open the “Settings” app on the iPhone or iPad
- Go to “Notifications”
- Locate and tap on “Signal”
- Scroll to the very bottom of Signal notification settings to find the Options section, then tap on “Show Previews”
- Choose the Signal “Show Previews” setting as desired, from the three following options:
- Always (Default) – this is the default setting which allows Signal messages to be visible in full even on a locked screen of iPhone or iPad
- When Unlocked – this setting mimics the new Messages app default where message previews are only visible when the device is unlocked, either though a passcode, Face ID, or Touch ID
- Never – never show previews of Signal messages, whether the device is locked or unlocked, thereby requiring the Signal app must be opened directly to read Signal messages
Once the setting has been changed, your next incoming message(s) on Signal will reflect the choice you made, hiding the message preview as desired.
If you’re aiming for increased security and privacy of your Signal messages, you’ll probably want to go with the “When Unlocked” or “Never” setting. You can always return to the default option of revealing full messages on a locked screen later if you want to.
Personally I choose “When Unlocked” since it matches the default of Messages app on new iPhone models (you can also change the same message preview setting in the Messages app Notifications settings if desired), which requires that the passcode, Face ID, or Touch ID is used to unlock and reveal the Signal message preview on the iPhone (or iPad) locked screen. The other advantage to using “When Unlocked” is that you can quickly see the previews revealed after authenticating just like you can with the Messages app as discussed here.
As always, be sure you use a passcode on the iPhone or iPad, the more secure the better. Depending on your iPhone or iPad, you might also want to choose to enable or disable Touch ID authentication, or enable or disable Face ID too (and you can also temporarily disable Face ID if you need to for whatever reason).
If you’re interested in the general topic of information security and privacy, you may appreciate looking through many other security tips for Apple devices, or checking out some privacy specific tips too. You can also review this collection of iPhone security tips to improve your device security, and for tips apply the same to an iPad as well. And of course, feel free to share your own Signal tips or general privacy tricks in the comments below!