Signal now lets you report and block spam messages

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Signal has added an easy way for users to report and block spam straight from message request screens with a single mouse click.

Message requests were added to Signal last year, in August 2020, to allow new users to reach out to other Signal users even if they're not in their address books and provide more contextual info to those on the receiving end.

Report and block spam in one click​

While users were already able to block such requests and delete them, Signal has now changed the block dialog to include a "Report Spam and Block" option to report unwanted and unsolicited messages.

"To squash out spam across the network, we added recourse for recipients if an unwanted inbound message appears. When you block a user from the message request screen, you can also report the message as spam," Signal said.

"Other services may use this as an opportunity to collect unencrypted conversation content or to upload additional information used to identify spam campaigns. Signal is committed to your privacy, and does not do this, so we take a different approach."

When clicking "Report Spam and Block," your device will send both the sender's phone number and a message ID to Signal's servers.

If the same phone number gets reported multiple times or shows signs of being used as a platform for automated spam, Signal will ask for a "proof of humanity" that will block additional messages from being sent until a challenge (e.g., a CAPTCHA) is completed.

This approach of dealing with potential spammers allows Signal to slow them down while keeping messaging smoothly for regular users.

Signal also modified its apps to "stop linkifying URLs rendered on the message request screen" as a simple measure to stop scammers from redirecting potential targets to phishing or fraud sites.


Signal spam block and report

Signal spam block and report (Signal)