Home Cyber Security News Signal Hints About Ditching Phone Numbers As User ID As It Introduces Signal PINs

Signal Hints About Ditching Phone Numbers As User ID As It Introduces Signal PINs

by Abeerah Hashim
Cellebrite decrypt Signal

Taking another step towards users’ privacy with ease, Signal has now announced a new feature. As revealed, Signal has introduced Signal PINs to prevent users’ data from a possible loss. With this, Signal reiterates its stance to ditch phone numbers to use as user IDs.

Signal Launches Signal PINs

In a recent post, the private messaging app Signal has announced a new security feature for the users. As announced, Signal has now launched Signal PINs – an addressing method not based on phone numbers.

With Signal PINs, the app ensures that the users’ data remains private to the users. Yet, they won’t lose access to their data in case of damage to their phone. As stated,

Signal PINs are based on Secure Value Recovery… to allow supporting data like your profile, settings, and who you’ve blocked to be securely recovered should you lose or switch devices.

According to Signal, this feature has come into action considering the demand from the users. While other apps store users’ data in plain text to let them recover or restore their data, this isn’t true for Signal.

Other apps and platforms – even if they support some form of encrypted messaging – store this kind of data in plaintext on their servers, so that when you lose or switch phones this information isn’t lost along with it. That’s not good for your privacy, though.

But since Signal does not store such data, it became impossible for the users to restore their app data when lost. Yet, with PINs, they can now have their data back with complete privacy.

PINs Aren’t Recoverable, But Users Won’t Lose

With this feature, users can set up a PIN for their account through which they can access their accounts whenever they want. In case of theft or damage to the phone, Signal PINs save the user from losing access to their data.

This PIN can be anything longer than or equal to 4 digits. Either the users can set simple numeric codes or long alphanumeric strings as their PINs.

While it’s a convenience, Signal has explained that the users may not be able to recover their PINs when forgotten.

Because Signal doesn’t have access to your keys – or your data – your PIN isn’t recoverable if you forget it.

However, the users do not require to share their PINs with anyone or note it down somewhere. It is because the app itself will send periodic reminders to the users regarding their PINs.

For more details and instructions regarding Signal PINs, users can visit the Signal support page.

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