Link preview in Signal
Justin Duino

Signal might focus on privacy and encryption, but it includes rich features found in other messaging apps like WhatsApp and iMessage. One such feature is link previews. Here’s how to turn link previews on or off, including on a per-message basis.

To generate link previews, the Signal app uses a privacy-enhancing proxy—the site you’re previewing never even sees your IP address. Link previews are supported on all sites that include HTTPS encryption.

How to Enable or Disable Link Previews in Signal

Start by opening the “Signal” app on your iPhone or Android smartphone.

Open the "Signal" app

Next, tap your profile picture, avatar, or username initials found in the app’s top-left corner.

Tap your avatar in the top-left corner

Select the “Privacy” option from the overflow menu.

Select the "Privacy" option

Finally, toggle on or off the “Generate Link Preview” setting.

Toggle on (or off) the "Generate Link Previews" option

You can now navigate back to the Signal app’s home screen and open a conversation. The next time you send a website to someone, it will either add a link preview automatically or only send the URL, depending on if you enabled or disabled the “Generate Link Previews” setting.

Note: Turning link previews on or off won’t affect messages sent to you by others. If the person on the other end disables or removes link previews, they won’t appear on your phone.

How to Remove Individual Link Previews in Signal

Link previews in Signal don’t have to be all or nothing. If you choose to leave the “Generate Link Previews” feature on, you can remove previews before sending individual messages.

As before, begin by launching the “Signal” app on your iPhone or Android smartphone.

Open the "Signal" app

Next, select a conversation or start a new individual or group chat by tapping on the pencil icon in the app’s top-right corner.

Select a conversation

Tap into the “New Message” text box and paste a URL.

Paste a link into the "New Message" text box

A preview image and text snippet will appear above the link. To remove it, tap on the “X” icon found in the top-right corner of the preview box.

Tap the "X" icon found on the preview

You can now send the link without the preview by tapping on the blue arrow button.

Send the message by selecting the blue arrow button

The URL will be sent without a link preview.

The link is sent without a preview

RELATED: How (and Why) to Encrypt Your Text Messages

Justin Duino Justin Duino
Justin Duino is the Managing Editor at How-To Geek. He has spent the last decade writing about Android, smartphones, and other mobile technology. In addition to his written work, he has also been a regular guest commentator on CBS News and BBC World News and Radio to discuss current events in the technology industry.
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