ArmorText 1.3.1 Review

Secure, control, and encrypt your messages with this free Android app.

Gryphn's free Android app brings its robust Secure Text Messaging technology to your smartphone. Gryphn encrypts your text, image, and video messages, in transit and in storage. It can create, send, and receive encrypted and even self-destructing picture messages. It lets you control who can see your messages and for how long, and it can even prevent users from saving your messages. It also protects your stored data: Any malware or virus (or snoop) gaining access to your phone will be unable to open or damage files encrypted by Gryphn's technology. You may have encountered Gryphn's secure mobile messaging technology under the names ArmorText or Gryphn Secure Text Messaging (Free). The latest release, version 1.5.0, simply calls itself Gryphn on your Home screen. We tried it in a Samsung Galaxy S3 running Android 4.1.1.

Gryphn's setup tips recommend replacing your regular text app icon on Home screen with its own icon. The first step in securing your device is to create a strong password; the next is to register with the Trust Key Exchange server to enable pushed updates (you can register multiple accounts, too). After we received a verification code and activated our account, Gryphn opened with all our existing text messages and conversations. Except for security, Gryphn is like any full-featured messaging app. We composed a message and tapped the Attach icon. Gryphn attaches (and even captures and records) pictures, videos, audio, and more. We opened the Settings and tapped Security to set Encryption (including Smart Predict) as well as Screen Lock, Disable Saving, Self Destruct (for picture messages), and Disable Forwarding options. We could also reset our password and private key and even sync with an enterprise portal. Gryphn's optional tips actually convey useful information, such as how easy it is to toggle encryption on and off.

We were impressed by Gryphn, and we're not alone since this capable app has found widespread use in the military, law enforcement, and other security-minded fields. Entering a secure password over and over on a virtual keyboard might be tedious, but it's worth the effort, compared to the risk.

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