On Lollipop, the text message notification on the lock screen includes some of the content of the text message. For two-factor code text messages, this will display the two factor code to anyone holding the phone even if they cannot unlock it. This seems like a security issue.

There seems to be a setting that more carefully hides the contents of notifications on the lock screen but that makes many of the other notifications useless it is hides data which I feel is useful and harmless to share.

I guess the options are:

  • Hide the content and put up with the inconvenience on other apps in the name of security.
  • Disable notifications from the messages app but then I have no way to know if there are new messages without manually checking.
  • Hide the content and petition other app makers to not respect that setting if the content isn't sensitive. Though I can easily think of examples that I might not consider sensitive but others might.

Are there other options available here? I'd love it if the messages app had a setting to control that behaviour. I'd be happy with the text message sender being displayed instead of the content.

  • If your device is rooted, you can try SMS Xposed- it claims option of Privacy option (hide sender, hide message)
    – beeshyams
    May 7, 2016 at 8:47
  • 1
    Thanks for the tip but it's not rooted and I'm not really advanced enough to get into all that. May 7, 2016 at 14:33

2 Answers 2


I would say the first notification in first image would serve as a good replacement for the first notification in second image.

(Click an image to enlarge it)


Given that an SMS usually contains information considered private in nature, I would suggest you setup an task which would remove the notification created by your default messaging app but instead place a new notification with sender's address only. Opening that new notification would open the default messaging app and if needed, perhaps the particular thread as well.

Following is a successful demonstration performed using MacroDroid:

MacroDroid defines a set of trigger(s), action(s) and constraint(s) as a macro. You would be needing two macros here.

Macro 1:

  • Trigger: Empty Trigger
  • Action: Launch Application → select your messaging app
  • Constraint: ignore
  • Name: Launch messaging app

Macro 2:

  • Trigger: Notification → Notification Received:

    • From: choose your default/preferred messaging app
    • Text Content: you can play with this but I suggest you begin with blacklisting any notification from messaging app. For that, select Any to trigger for any notification.
  • Action:

    • Clear Notifications → Select Application(s) → select your messaging app
    • Display Notification:

      • Icon: change as appropriate
      • In the first text field write: [not_title]

        [not_title] corresponds to Notification Title (the title of the notification which acted as the trigger).

        You may be interested in dealing with further information from the notification. For that, tap the button next to the text field and see the information for yourself.

      • In the second text field write anything that you need. As an example, you can write: Double tap to open the message
      • Tick Invoke macro when pressed and select your first macro i.e. Launch messaging app
  • Constraint: Device Locked/Unlocked → Locked
  • Name: as appropriate to you

This is how the said macros works: whenever any notification from your selected messaging app would show up when the device is locked, the notification would be immediately removed and a new notification from MacroDroid would be generated with the same title and your custom text. If you single/double tap the notification your selected messaging app would be launched.

(Click an image to enlarge it; the two macros I created)


It is possible to easily make a similar automation task using Automate app.

  • Sure. No problem (-:
    – Firelord
    May 8, 2016 at 20:59

It is possible to control the nature of the notifications on a per-app basis. If you go to:

  • Settings > Sounds and notifications > App notifications

Then you can select the Messages app and toggle on the Hide content on lock screen option. This isn't as useful as the macro driven approach from Firelord as it hides both the sender and the content. It would be preferable in the case of this question to show the sender but not the content.

Note that this option is only available if you have selected to show all notifications on the Sounds and notifications settings menu.

  • I'm curious. Which Android device and ROM are you using? Stock Android 5.x and 6.x doesn't offer the option you noted in the answer, else I would've suggested that first.
    – Firelord
    May 10, 2016 at 18:05
  • 1
    I'm using a Samsung J5 with Android 5.1.1 according to the Settings. Perhaps it is a Samsung thing? May 11, 2016 at 14:29
  • I have this option on my moto g (lollipop), and I think this is the best answer
    – Ferrybig
    May 16, 2016 at 9:45

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