Signal Messaging App Review: Why Parents Should Know?
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Introduction: what is the signal app?
The Signal app is a private messenger that works more like the messaging app. It allows you to send messages to other users while maintaining privacy. With this, you can share text, photos, videos, and other data.
The Signal app is also free and is available for Android OS and iOS devices. Besides, this app promotes data encryption. Hence, only the sender and receiver eventually know the content of the sent data. Furthermore, you can set this app to let your messages automatically disappear.
Do you want t know the best part? You can take screenshots of your messages before they disappear!
Several signal app reviews note how this app is paramount when it comes to protecting the confidentiality of users and their sources. That said, note that you can use the Signal app anonymously if you so wish. So apart from sharing data with friends, strangers can also crop in via group chats.
What is the signal app used for?
The Signal messaging app works like the default SMS messenger. The major difference is enforced and encrypted security.
- Use it to send regular messages to both the Signal app users and non-Signal users. Actually, your messages are encrypted, contributing to higher degrees of security.
- Apart from messaging, other apps like WhatsApp, Skype, and Facebook Messenger incorporate the Signal protocol.
- The Signal app also sends a notification to you and reminds you to invite your friends and other contacts within your reach.
- This app also offers a voice call feature.
- Group chat and video chat features are also present with the Signal app.
- Above all, your messages will automatically disappear, unlike other apps.
Is the signal app safe for kids?
Kids’ safety is key as far as apps’ usage is concerned. And the norm is no different from the Signal messaging app! It’s regarded as not safe for kids due to its inherent secrecy nature. Furthermore, it’s highly interactive and offers windows for interactive conversations with friends and those who aren’t. Here are some dangers that users face.
#1. Exposure to explicit content
Since it’s an online messaging gig, strangers can post any unregulated content, exposing kids to such. Again, being secured with end-to-end encryption, even the cleverest parent may not know what kind of data is being transmitted by their kids.
Some unscrupulous users may take this chance to extract personal information from innocent users. According to Forbes, it’s reported that the Signal app contains a bug that lets them eavesdrop on calls, making the user vulnerable to hacks. Furthermore, your purported anonymous friend could be after your personal information, to open doors for possible cybercrimes.
#3. Sexual harassment
A window for anonymity also encourages other users to post any kind of videos and images, including sexually related data. According to Teen Vogue, their concern is the end-to-end encryption ability. Any data is tunnel protected, and messages cannot be read by any other person apart from the sender and receiver. So, it may take some time before a parent gets hold of any such messages.
Again, cyberbullying is paramount in online conversations. Signal app users often find themselves in compromising situations like bullying. Your child may suffer in silence for a long time without you realizing what’s behind the scenes. Some cases of cyberbullying are severe, leading to suicide.
Online predators take this chance to pounce on innocent kids. Pedophiles are not after the good morals of the coming generation. It is better as a parent to closely monitor what your kid does with his/her phone and the kind of friends they communicate with. Again, appearing to meet such online friends physically is an act that parents should strongly stand against.
3 negative short reviews from the Internet: commonsensemedia.org
A parent shows concern over the kids of videos and pictures his son gets from a not-well-known user. Anonymity seems to encourage other users into such abuses.
Some individuals also use this platform to promote drug usage and abuse. Kids have, from time to time, received content about drugs as reported by some parents.
Another parent reports that her daughter was lured into dishing out her personal information. There could be possible hacking activities behind all these as one parent says. “There is a bug within the app that allows a hacker to call a target device. The call is also answerable without the recipient accepting the call. The hacker then gets a chance to obtain any needed information by eavesdropping”.
What age is the Signal app for, and can kids bypass it?
- Signal app reviews its recommended users’ age at 12 years and above. However, this app has no age verification during the sign-up process. By this, kids can easily bypass it and key in vague ages to get access.
- In general, the Signal app is recognized as the safest massaging app because of its end-to-end encryption mechanism. But this is far from the truth because of this encryption. Kids feel they can hide their actions from the concerned guardians and parents.
- The fact that messages automatically disappear may throw kids into disarray. They could post riskier content about bullying and abuse, knowing that they won’t be permanent.
- It also becomes difficult for parents to monitor their kid’s behaviors.
What can parents do to protect their kids?
It is important to ensure that your kids stay safe while messaging or using the internet.
It is okay for parents to understand that their teens or tweens are at the peak of exploring, and chatting online is one such involving activity that they can’t evade. But parents need to enlighten their kids that chatting with strangers may have dire consequences. So, they just need to act smart by sending what is appropriate.
And if they get inappropriate content! They should immediately disclose such to a close caregiver or you as their parent.
It is, therefore, upon parents to enforce laws to attain such safety.
1. Be discreet
By being discreet, kids can evade hackers online. Encourage your kids not to use their real-life identification content. Again, it is wise to let kids be as open to you as possible such that they disclose any information that goes on within such messaging apps. By this, you can act fast and arrest any situation that may bring harm to them.
2. Avoid conversations with anonymous individuals
The Signal app allows interaction with both friends and those who are not yet friends. Advice your kids to avoid anonymous chatting. It is via such chats that some users take advantage and send explicit content to innocent users.
3. Use parental control apps
There are also numerous parental control apps that parents can use to ensure their kids stay safe online. The beauty of such apps is that you don’t need to be present to enforce protection on your child. Let’s learn more about one option with the most reliable parental control app.
FamiSafe Parental Control App
FamiSafe works best in ensuring your kid’s safety. It can prevent cyberbullying, enhance location tracking, and block unwanted apps and sites. Furthermore, you don’t have to have direct access to your kid’s phone. You only need 3-steps from signing up to getting all the information you require from your kid’s phone.
Main Features of FamiSafe parental control app
App block & Usage
If your kid is jumpy, then this feature will be of great help. It lets you block any app that you deem inappropriate. You can then deter your kid from using various sites that promote violence and other bad behaviors.
This feature lets you monitor which activities your kid is engaged in. And with the right information, you’ll know which areas to deter him from getting engaged in. This will also help you in restricting and avoiding obsession with non-productive activities.
Browser History & Web Filter
This feature is pro in giving you information on what your kids search for online. The browser history will point to the sites and content recently searched. Furthermore, you can filter those sites that contain inappropriate content like gambling and pornography.
Many online apps are in the limelight of promoting inappropriate content and actions like violence, gambling, and sexting. Most Signal app reviews have stressed proper protective mechanisms on the Signal app. However, kids are smart and may bypass various laws that are enforced by these developers. And by this, parents keep up with worries each time they have to step out for work and other duties.
Given that you can’t control what kids do on their phones and computer, parental control apps are proving a haven for most parents. FamiSafe parental control app can send you alerts whenever your kid receives or sends an inappropriate text.