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How to send self-destructing messages on iOS

This free app will help you send private, self-destructing messages to fellow iPhone users.

Jason Cipriani/CNET

Confide is a free, simple service that makes it possible to send self-destructing messages to friends and colleagues using an iPhone app.

By using your e-mail or Facebook contacts, you can send what amounts to an e-mail through the service. It's then encrypted and the recipient will receive an alert of the pending message. For those who don't have an account, the sign up process only requires a few details (e-mail address and password), and downloading the Confide iOS app. Once you have an account and the app is installed, you're ready to go.

Screenshot by Jason Cipriani/CNET

What makes the service so appealing is that in order to read a message, you have to swipe over each word to briefly reveal it. The words are then covered up again as you progress through the message, making it impossible to take a photo of the screen, and thus the entire message.

And when it comes to screenshots, Confide has a plan for those too. As soon as you take a screenshot while a message is being displayed, you're kicked out of the message and it becomes unavailable. The message is then marked as "Screenshot" and the sender is alerted. At most, someone will be able to take a screenshot of up to three words and that's all.

A message can only be opened once, so make sure you understand the contents before going back to your inbox.

(Via GigaOm)