Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login
Why Signal don't add option to create an account without phone number?
5 points by dragonball 2 days ago | hide | past | favorite | 5 comments
Why Signal don't add option to create an account without phone number? I don't want to share my phone number with anyone. I would like to have a secure Messanger, but with username/password only.

They claim to be working on a "proper" way to support this.

See e.g. https://freedom.press/training/blog/beyond-signal-phone-numb...

I am not aware of a blog post that fully explains their reasoning, and what exactly the downsides are of "just adding the feature". I can come up with several reasons myself, but it would be nice to read a good summary.

Sorry. There's no other option other than handing over your phone number which is a horrific idea. Just search SIM-swapping attacks (very common) or SS7 attacks (rare). You'll be surprised.

If you really want to use Signal, buy a throwaway SIM or probably use a Google Voice number to verify and login.

Honestly, I personally don't recommend using Signal unless they get rid of that phone number verification / login process. But I also don't blame general users for not using Element (Matrix) either (Which I think is more secure and works without a phone number, but it is unfriendly to use compared to Signal).

I generally agree.

There's a good trick that works around the majority of the problems of handing out your cell phone number: People rarely do it and most are not aware of this, but you can use landline or SIP numbers as well for Signal and Whatsapp and probably others, for which neither SIM-swapping nor SS7 attacks apply. Instead of an SMS, you can receive an ordinary phone call, and you only need to receive it once (and can then disconnect your phone [client] again).

Requiring a phone number simple way to mediate and bottleneck people trying to create bot accounts or abuse the service and also create a positive user onboarding experience to actually use the app. I disagree with the need for a phone number, but it makes the act of "registering" much easier. There's a reason Gmail and other similar "huge" services also require phone numbers for registration.

Probably because it wants to be a privacy focused alternative to WhatsApp. Not a full-blown privacy-first IM platform.

Guidelines | FAQ | Lists | API | Security | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact