How to Delete a Telegram Account

By Jayden Andrews. March 27, 2020

Many people across the globe use Telegram to send secure messages to their family, friends, and colleagues. A lot of them rely on this communication app, especially because it features end-to-end encryption that keeps all their data private. With privacy becoming a growing concern for many, more and more users are turning to security-focused messengers like Telegram.

That said, not everyone likes to have this app on their devices. Perhaps, they find other messaging apps more convenient to use, or they have other reasons. However, the process is not straightforward. After all, many users reported that they couldn’t find a deactivation option within the app. Now, if you are one of the people who want to learn how to delete a Telegram account, then you’ve come to the right place.

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How to Delete a Telegram Account

There are two ways to deactivate your Telegram account. However, before we proceed with the instructions, let us remind you that deleting your account cannot be undone. Again, remember that once you’ve completed the steps, your contact lists, chats, and groups will be removed permanently. However, if you have no problem with this, you can follow the instructions below.

Using the Self-Destruction Settings

One of the notable security features of Telegram is self-destruction. This feature will prompt the removal of the account after a certain period of inactivity. By default, the inactivity period is set to six months. However, you can tweak the settings and shorten the timeframe. Here are the steps:

1. Open the Telegram app on your device, then log into your account.
2. Choose Settings,then click Privacy and Security.

3. Once you get to the Privacy and Security page, scroll down until you reach the ‘Delete My Account if I’m Away For’ option.

4. Change the settings to 1 month.

5. Refrain from opening your Telegram account for one month.

After a month of inactivity, your Telegram account will be deleted automatically. You will no longer be able to access your contacts or conversations. That said, this option still gives users the chance to change their mind, since the removal is not immediate.

In case you decide to keep your Telegram account, all you need to do is log in and the self-destruct period will reset. On the other hand, if you want to get rid of your Telegram account right away, you can try the next method.

Deleting Your Telegram Account Manually

You won’t find any ‘delete account permanently’ option in the Telegram app. If you want to remove your account immediately, you’d have to do so via a web browser on your PC or mobile device. To do that, follow the instructions below:

1. Visit Telegram’s website and access its deactivation page.

2. Once you get to the deactivation page, submit your account phone number. Remember to enter the international format of your number.
3. You will receive a confirmation code on your mobile number. You must submit this to the deactivation page on Telegram’s site.
4. Once you get to the next page, you will be asked what made you decide to remove your Telegram account. You can type a reason for leaving or you can leave the box blank.
5. Click Done to proceed.
6. You will be prompted to confirm the action. If you want to proceed, click the ‘Yes, delete my account’ button.

After completing these steps, your Telegram account will be deleted. The app will also be removed from your device. If you decide to use Telegram again, you may need to wait for a few days before you will be allowed to create a new account.

Why People Delete an Account on Telegram

Even when you compare it with other messaging apps within its class, Telegram is quite secure and private. This is also the reason why it’s more popular than its competitors. However, you may still find other reasons to delete an account on Telegram, and here are some of them:

Previous Security Controversies

Telegram has had a long history of security controversies, including leaks, hacker attacks, and breaches. It is worth noting that hackers were able to use Telegram to infect Windows PCs with malware. Moreover, the company has been known to leak metadata from time to time. Organizations like the Committee to Protect Journalists and Stiftung Warentest have deemed this app to be unsafe. While Telegram is generally considered to be secure, its past security controversies may deter some users.

Less Control Over Conversations

One of the functions that Telegram users can access is deleting messages from other people. The other party won’t even be allowed to give consent to the action. As such, there’s less control over the conversations, paving way for manipulation. One of the possible scenarios that may stem out of this is that the other party may alter the content of the chat, changing it to their favor.

Sketchy Security Protocol

It is worth noting that the messaging security protocol that Telegram uses has not been proven to be secure and reliable. MTProto has been criticized to be not secure enough by numerous cryptographists. What’s more, you won’t find an open-source version of it, making it difficult to test. So, for users who may want a more transparent structure, Telegram may not be the best choice.

Remember that once you deactivate your Telegram account, you won’t be able to retrieve it. Doing so will remove all your messages, contact lists, channels, and groups completely. In the event that you decide to sign up for Telegram again, you won’t be able to restore all the data from your older account. As such, we recommend that you export your data before deleting your account entirely. This way, you will still have a copy of your photos, chats, and other media.

To export your Telegram data, you’ll need the desktop version of the app. Once you have that, you can follow the steps below:

1. Launch Telegram Desktop, then go to Settings.
2. Select Export Telegram Data from the options.
3. Click Export Chat History, then choose the type of data you want to export.

After completing these steps, you will have your Telegram data in JSON or HTML format. Consequently, you’ll be able to view the file even without your Telegram account.

Keeping Your Data Private

Over the years, Telegram has been the subject of security and privacy controversies. Of course, this is not the only messaging app that has had doubtful security. Hackers are evolving and are becoming more complex. Now, more than ever, it is crucial to ensure that your online accounts will be kept private.
There are various measures you can take to improve your online security. One of the best ways to do so is by using a reliable VPN service whenever you transmit information online, browse through the web, or stream videos. With multiple layers of encryption, you can ensure that your connection is private, anonymous, and secure.

What a VPN Service Can Do for You

When a VPN routes your traffic to a server, it encrypts your connection. This can be beneficial, especially when you’re using a public Wi-Fi network. No one—even the Internet service provider—can see the information you transmit. Now, you must remember that a VPN won’t protect you from dodgy websites or sites that do not have a security certificate. If you submit information to a site that doesn’t have encryption or you download malware unknowingly, your VPN won’t protect you. So, you should pay due diligence before taking action on any site.

Choose the Best VPN to Protect Your Privacy

While the main purpose of VPNs is to keep your connection secure and private, not all of them are created equal. Some VPNs, especially the free ones, may actively compromise your privacy. Nothing is free in this world, and if you’re getting a VPN without paying a dime, it’s likely that the company is harvesting your data. Usually, to keep their operations running, a free VPN service sells user data. There is a high chance that with a free VPN, you’re putting your privacy at risk instead of protecting it.

As such, we recommend that you invest in a reputable VPN. In general, you’re making a better decision when choosing paid VPNs. Since they are getting money from their subscribers, they are not incentivized to sell your data. Despite that, there are still some security flaws in paid VPN services. So, you need to be aware of the capabilities and limitations of a tool. A reputable VPN should have a strict no-logs policy, military-grade encryption, and various security protocols. This way, you’ll know that your online sessions are secure, anonymous, and private.

Despite that, we still recommend that you be cautious about the information you submit online. Never visit unencrypted sites or download anything malicious. Even with a VPN, you should still stay vigilant and alert. Also, be careful about transmitting data over messaging apps, no matter what product you use.

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