Telegram is one of the most popular messaging apps for Android and iOS devices. As a cross-platform social networking service, its liabilities have become well-known over the past few years. You can use Telegram safely and are secure with these top 10 useful tips which will minimize your risk and increase your privacy on the platform.
Telegram is one of the safest messaging apps created by Russian developers. But according to the reports, its relationship with the Russian government has not been very convincing since it refused to share its users’ personal chats with the country’s security services.
After the Russia-Ukraine war started in early 2022, Telegram has become an absolute necessity for the regional people. It is different from other privacy-focused messaging apps as it provides new levels of safety and security features based on your settings. Here are the Top 10 useful tips which will help you to use Telegram safely and securely.
List of Top 10 useful Tips & tricks for Telegram to secure your account
- Secret chats option
- Enabling two-step verification
- Disabling active sessions
- Sending self-destructive media
- Deleting Sender’s Messages
- Lock chats
- Using proxy services
- Checking group permissions
- Clearing payment and shipping information
- Adjusting Telegram’s delete my account timer
1. Secret chats option
The first security feature the platform provides you is the “secret chat option”. You all must be knowing that Telegram’s regular chats are not end-to-end encrypted which means that these messages that are obstructed by third parties could likely be read.
But luckily the app provides end-to-end encryption in the secret chat option. Notably, these secret chats do not come with any multi-device support features. To get started go through these steps:-
First of all, open your Telegram account. Then tap on the pencil icon available at the bottom right of the screen which will open a new chat page. After this tap the ‘New Secret Chat’ option. Then select the contact with which you want to start a secret chat.
2. Enabling two-step verification
Enabling two-step verification is a good security policy for any app you use. This feature will ask you to insert your password every time you log into your Telegram account from any new device. To enable this feature on Telegram:-
First, open your Telegram account. Then tap on the sandwich menu (three horizontal lines) available at the top left corner of your display. After this select the ‘Settings option from the menu and then tap on ‘Privacy and Security. At last tap on the ‘Two Step verification’ from the Security section.
3. Disabling active sessions
If you own multiple devices and have multiple Telegram sessions opened altogether, this can be useful. Sometimes you have to use Telegram on any device that you don’t own. In such cases, it is a good practice to log out of all sessions regularly in terms of security. To view and disable your active Telegram sessions:-
Open your Telegram account. Then tap on three horizontal lines or the sandwich menu in the top left corner of your screen. From the menu tap ‘settings’ and then select ‘Privacy and Security. From this page tap on ‘Active sessions. A new page ‘Devices’ will be opened. From this page Terminate the sessions that you don’t need.
4. Sending self-destructive media
Sending self-destructive media is another very good security feature that you can send both within normal chats and secret chats. For this you have to:-
First, open your Telegram Account. Then select a chat. Then tap on the ‘attach’ icon available in the bottom right corner of your screen. After this capture a new image or video with the help of Telegram’s built-in capture tool. Then tap on the stopwatch icon located next to crop, edit, and other options. Set a timer after which you want the media to expire. Finally, tap on the ‘send’ button.
5. Deleting Sender’s Messages
Telegram allows you to delete your own messages as well as those messages which are sent to you in personal chat. This feature is very helpful if you anyhow lose one of your devices and don’t want your private messages to be read by any unknown person. For this:-
You have to open Telegram. Then open a chat. Thereafter select the messages you want to delete by long-pressing on the particular chat message. Then tap on the ‘delete’ icon available in the top right corner of the page. Then tick on the “Also delete for…” option. At the end ‘Confirm’ delete. You can even delete an entire chat with this feature.
6. Lock chats
You can lock your chats on some specific Android phones by setting app-specific locks either with a password, PIN, or biometrics authentication. If your device does not have this feature you can still lock your chats in Telegram. To do this:-
Go to the sandwich menu or the little three lines located in the top left corner of your Telegram app. This will open a new page. Select the ‘settings’ option from the display menu. Then go to ‘privacy and security. From the security section select ‘Passcode Lock. Then tap on ‘Enable Passcode’. The app will ask you to create a passcode. ‘Set up your passcode and then ‘Confirm’ it.
7. Using proxy services
You can create your own self-hosted VPN as it is essential. If you are not able to use ‘A VPN’ you can hide your IP address in Telegram behind a proxy server. To access these settings:-
Go to your Telegram account then tap the sandwich menu. Then go to ‘settings’. Then select ‘data and storage. Scroll down and tap on ‘Proxy settings. At last ‘set up a proxy server. This is the seventh best useful tip and features to secure your account among Telegram 10 tips and tricks.
8. Checking group permissions
Being added to any group randomly with lots of members is a bad idea from a security point of view. In the telegram, you can particularize who can add your account to groups. To do this:-
Tap on the sandwich menu of your telegram account. Then select the ‘setting’ option and go to ‘privacy and security. From this page select the ‘Groups’ option from the privacy section. Then change the option from ‘Everybody’ to ‘My Contact’. And you are done.
9. Clearing payment and shipping information
Some Telegram business accounts allow you to complete direct payments within the app. You can delete your payment and shipping information in Telegram. This is important if you decide to share them. To delete them:-
Tap the sandwich menu of your Telegram account. Then go to ‘settings’. From the settings page go to ‘privacy and security. From the ‘Bots and Websites’ section, select the ‘clear payment and shipping Info’ option. The app will display a confirmation message under ‘Clear payment Info’. Tick on both ‘Shipping Info’ and ‘Payment Info’ and then finally tap ‘clear’.
10. Adjusting Telegram’s delete my account timer
Telegram offers its users a ‘delete my account feature. This is helpful if you lose access to your account for a long time period. With these simple steps you can set up a timer after which your account will be deleted permanently:
Open your Telegram account. Then tap the sandwich menu. Then go to ‘settings’. From here go to ‘privacy and security. In delete, my account section tap ‘if away for’. Mention your preferred time period. Your account will be automatically deleted after this.
Hope these basic tips and tricks will give you a more safe and more Secure chat experience in telegram. But if you work with any sensitive information zone you have to be more careful about some additional threats.
For more in-depth information you can check out ‘The telegram harm reduction explainer’ of ‘The Electrical Frontier Foundation’ which specializes in digital safety and security.