Signal App, the ultra-secure smartphone application approved by well-known NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, it has declared a fresh update that will give users the ability to make video calls. But this encrypted video calls feature is currently in beta but will soon be released for extensive use.
The Signal App developed by US-based non-profit Open Whisper Systems, Signal App is well-known in security circles for its strong end-to-end encryption capabilities which effectively protect your text messages and voice chats from unwanted snooping, observation and interception.
In fact, Signal is between the top most secure messaging apps and now it’s taking a step further, aiming to deliver secure video calls too. The most recent Signal app update consists of an open beta to test encrypted video calling to secure conversation on all fronts, not just written and voice chats.
Signal App for Android and iOS:
The new Signal update available for both Android and iOS includes the open beta support for encrypted video calls, which means that all users can test the new Signal app feature and provide feedback to improve it.
The Moxie Marlinspike of computer engineer’s in Open Whisper Systems said in a blog post that the development to video calling- which will work in a similar ways to work from WhatsApp and Google represents an “entirely new calling infrastructure for signal”.
He also said the move should also increase the quality of its voice calling. Marlinspike wrote on 14 February about the plan, is to roll the update out in stages to help collect feedback from users with different “devices, networks, and regions” to make sure the final release is smooth.
How to use video calls on Signal
The new feature of Signal App, the video calling beta will only work between users who enabled the ability. You can easily activate video calls on Signal app on both Apple iOS and Google Android by going to: Signal App Settings >> Advanced >> Video calling beta.
Still for an app that was developed for privacy conscious users, because of the some security concerns, Open Whisper System discloses the update may bring. In some cases, metadata possibly collected by technology firms, it advised.
For example, if you have an iPhone, when you enabled the new video calling feature on iOS it will let them take advantage of a new function called “CallKit”, which will leave call logs stored in the device’s “recent calls” list.
The latest update also allows users to use CallKit in iOS 10 to answer calls directly from their lock screen. Like this, Signal calls are treated just as regular calls.
Marlinspike said this was because of iOS treating CallKit “like any other call” and noted it could mean some information will then also be synced to iCloud if this function is turned on. Such data would include who was called, call duration, and their number.
Fortunately, this feature offers an opt-out option, and can be disabled at: Settings >> Advanced >> Use CallKit. Currently, a Russian phone-cracking firm, Elcomsoft, claimed Apple was storing iCloud logs after they had been deleted, in some cases for over a year.