The Complete Guide to Archiving Android Text Messages – Updated

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With three billion active Android phone users globally, regulated firms and government agencies have an uphill battle in complying with text message recordkeeping requirements.

By law, these entities are required to secure backups of their employee conversations on another device or the cloud for a specific period.

But the task is highly complicated as companies must deal with hundreds or thousands of texts exchanged every day across departments, stakeholders, networks, and devices.

Given the urgent nature of SMS archiving compliance, there are a variety of quick fixes that compliance officers, human resource teams, and legal departments employ.

Stopgap solutions to set up a text message archive

Private companies, and state, or federal agencies that issue phones to employees have a variety of third-party solutions and in-built features to archive Android text messages.

Third-party SMS archiving apps from the Android Play Store

It is quite common for firms to rely on free-to-download third-party Android apps to archive SMSs. But compliance officers must be aware of the privacy policy of these apps, so the company or agency’s data doesn’t get sold or misused.

There are even some paid versions of these text message archiving apps that come with functionalities, such as an ad-free experience and the ability to schedule regular backups.

My Backup

My Backup is an SMS backup app that has 1 million+ downloads. Using the app, your employees can have their SMSs, along with texts, photos, videos, etc., backed up to a computer or transferred via USB OTG.

SMS Backup & Restore

Developed by SyncTech Pty Ltd., the SMS Backup & Restore app is a handy, free tool to back up text messages and call history and restore it on demand. Notably, the backed-up or archived SMSs and MMSs can be sent via email for better reporting and compliance measures.

Phone Backup and Restore

Using the Phone Backup and Restore application trusted by over a million people, your employees can securely transfer, backup, and restore business communication, including call logs, SMSs, etc.

SMS Backup, Print & Restore

This versatile app, the SMS Backup, Print & Restore can do more than just backup your employees’ MMS and SMS conversations. The messages can be exported to formats, such as CSV, PDF, HTML, JPG, or TXT to share as part of e-discovery, auditing, and even printing.

Super Backup & Restore

Super Backup & Restore runs automatically based on the SMS and MMS backup schedule set up by you. The backups are saved to the cloud or the device’s SD card itself. It is further worth mentioning that the app is often cited as the fastest data backup and restoring tool on Android.

SMS Backup+

The SMS Backup+ performs the crucial service of backing up everything from SMSs to MMSs that are part of your business communication to Gmail. The information can also be restored conveniently to a new phone when it is issued to your employee.

Inbuilt text archival capabilities of Android devices

Using their Android devices, employees can also take screenshots/ video recordings of their important conversations or automatically back up the data to Google Drive.

Backing up text messages in Google Drive

Archiving SMS with Google Drive is a highly preferred option, given the availability of 15 GB of free storage and the ability to access your data across devices with a single account. Setting up the same is also a painless process; you can have employees go to their Android phone Settings and enable Backup to Google Drive. Following that, they can select exactly what they want to backup/ archive, such as SMS texts, call history, etc.

Recordkeeping text messages by taking screenshots/ screen recording

While this is not recommended for compliance purposes, taking a screenshot of specific texts, WhatsAppTelegram messages, etc., can come in handy when you want to access that part of the conversation.

In the absence of a proper text message archive, problematic messages from coworkers or third parties may end up disappearing because many instant messengers have that option nowadays. In that case, screenshotting the text messages and saving them to Google Drive can be beneficial.

Otherwise, there is the option of opening up the text messaging application and scrolling through it while recording the screen.

Storing text messages via the Messages App

One of the most straightforward ways to preserve text messages is by using the in-built Messages app. When you select the text thread that has to be archived, an option pops up, offering to archive them. You can even select multiple conversation text threads for archival/ backup in the device or external storage card. A similar process can even be performed with the Google Voice app, where employees can archive voicemails, calls, etc., including text messages.

The undeniable need for a comprehensive, specialized mobile archiving solution

Government organizations and private entities from the tech, healthcare, finance, etc., domains are under intense scrutiny from regulatory agencies, lawmakers, and even the judiciary. So the extensive archiving needs of these types of organizations can only be satisfied with an Android archiver that not just archives texts but also categorizes them in an easily searchable and retainable manner.

Since archiving happening on the employee’s personal device defeats the purpose of oversight from management and regulators without the threat of message deletion or tampering, the archiver used must be capable of capturing SMSs and call monitoring, including the metadata, from the device and storing it in a cloud server or another storage facility of choice, where it can remain as a single source of truth for the retention period.

Aside from that companies and government bodies need an archiver that can reliably capture information from all the popular networks, including AT&TVerizon, etc., and device types, including BYOD models.

A mobile archiver for Android like TeleMessage can do wonders for your compliance efforts. It works seamlessly in the background of the employee’s device and captures SMSs, voice calls, and social media conversations with coworkers, prospects, and clients without the need for any intervention. Crucially, organizations can enforce access control by limiting data access based on user role.

The information can also be retained for as long as all the applicable regulations necessitate it. In that duration, you can analyze the archived text messages from your employee Android devices to gauge employee productivity, settle disputes, improve your service offerings, and perform audits.

For more details on how the solution can be configured to your needs, contact our team.

About TeleMessage

TeleMessage captures and retains mobile content, including mobile SMS messages, voice calls, WhatsApp, and WeChat conversations from corporate or BYOD mobile phones to ensure compliance with various data protection regulations. The messages are securely and reliably retained within TeleMessage servers or forwarded to your choice of archiving data storage vendor.

Our mobile archiving products securely record content from mobile carriers and mobile devices for various ownership models (BYOD, CYOD, and employer-issued). With our multiple archiving solutions, you can always find the right tools or blend for your requirements:


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