How to delete messages on Signal from your devices and on others' devices

It's easy to delete messages on Signal on desktop or mobile.Thomas Trutschel/Getty Images
  • You can delete messages you've sent on Signal, but in most cases, you'll only be able to delete it from your own devices.
  • If you try to delete a message you sent on Signal within the last three hours, you may be able to delete it everywhere, but you'll need to be using the iPhone app or the latest beta version of the Android app.
  • To delete a message from the Signal mobile app, tap and hold your finger on it; on the desktop version, click the three dots next to it.

No matter what messaging app you use, it's only a matter of time before you inevitably send a message you'd like to delete. Luckily, Signal lets you do just that.

In most cases, deleting a message on Signal will only remove it from your device — anyone else in the chat with you will still see it. This is useful if you know your phone or laptop is about to be taken, and you need to erase something classified or sensitive.

That said, if you're using the iPhone or beta Android version of Signal, if you try to delete a message within three hours of when it was sent, Signal can attempt to delete it from every device that received it. This might not work though, since the recipient's device might not be turned on when the delete request is made. Advertisement

The bottom line is you can always delete messages from your own device, but deleting it from anyone else's isn't guaranteed.

How to delete messages on Signal on your phone

The steps to delete a message on iPhone and Android devices are the same.

1. Start the Signal app and find the message you want to delete.
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2. Tap and hold the message until you see a toolbar appear. On iPhones, it'll be at the bottom of the screen, but look for it at the top of the screen on Androids.

Tap and hold a message to see the toolbar that includes the Delete icon.Dave Johnson/Business Insider
3. If you want to select multiple images, tap the selection icon, which looks like a bulleted list, and then select all the messages you want to delete. 4. Tap the Delete icon — it looks like a trashcan.Advertisement

5. In the pop-up window that appears, choose where you want to delete the message. Depending on how long it's been since you sent the message, you might see both "Delete for Me" and "Delete for Everyone" options, or more likely, only "Delete for Me."

Under certain conditions, you might be able to delete the message from the recipient's Signal app as well.Dave Johnson/Business Insider

On Android, the ability to delete messages for all users is in beta, and so you might not see this option even if it's been less than three hours. Instead of being able to choose where to delete it, your Signal app may only warn you that you're about to permanently delete the message from your own device.

How to delete messages on Signal on your desktop

1. Start the Signal app and find the message you want to delete. Advertisement

2. Click the three dots beside the message you want to remove and, in the pop-up menu, click "Delete Message."

Use the three dots beside a message to delete it.Dave Johnson/Business Insider

3. In the confirmation window, click "Delete" to confirm you really want to do this.

You won't get the option to delete the message for everyone — on the desktop version of Signal, you can only delete messages from your own devices. Advertisement

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