Enable automatic message deletion

Olvid has been designed to exchange potentially sensitive data in a secure manner. It is therefore natural, in certain situations, to want to limit the lifetime of this data.

Olvid offers several ways to program the automatic deletion of messages, depending on your needs:

  • Ephemeral messages whose settings are shared with all recipients and therefore affect the existence of these messages on their devices.

  • Message retention policies whose settings are local and specific to your device and which in no way affect the existence of messages on your correspondents’ devices. The goal is not to limit the overall lifetime of a message, but only to regularly “clean” the content of your device.

  • Automatically deleted messages will never be recoverable.

Ephemeral messages - shared settings

An ephemeral message is a message that the sender decides to limit its visibility or existence lifetime at the time of sending.

You can change your shared ephemeral messages settings for each message, or for a discussion or for all your discussions.

Olvid offers 3 different settings for ephemeral messages, which can be combined:

Read once

The message can only be displayed once. It is deleted as soon as you leave the discussion view.

Visibility duration

The message can only be displayed for a certain period of time. Once displayed, a countdown timer is started, after which the message is deleted.

Existence duration

The message, whether read or not, is deleted a certain time after it is sent.

Read more about ephemeral messages.

Message retention policy - local settings

Message retention policies are a way to automatically delete messages from your device only.

Olvid offers 2 settings for message retention:

# Count based

You set the maximum number of messages to be kept in each discussion on your device. A setting of 100 ensures that as soon as a discussion contains more than 100 messages, the oldest messages are automatically deleted.

Time based

You set the lifetime of the messages to be kept on your device. A setting of 15 days automatically deletes all messages as soon as they are more than 15 days old.

Read more about message retention.