WhatsApp will now also allow encryption of call backups

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In the past year it has repeatedly made headlines on WhatsApp in the context of the information privacy of its many users. But even though all the calls on WhatsApp are encrypted from end to end – once you choose to back up those calls, the encryption breaks. Now it’s finally going to change.

Closing the large hole in the encryption wall

After years of dissonance between the fact that calls are encrypted from end to end, and no one can read the messages except the addressee and recipient (and WhatsApp itself, in some cases) and the fact that the backup has actually revealed all the contents of the calls – this weekend Mark Zuckerberg announced a new feature .

WhatsApp is the first messaging app that will enable end-to-end encryption in calls and backup on a global scale. Achieving this was a significant technical challenge that required an entirely new infrastructure for storing encryption keys and cloud storage in various operating systems, ”Zuckerberg wrote with the announcement of the significant change. It is important to note that WhatsApp is not the first to allow encrypted call backup, and a signal allows this as well. The achievement is mainly in the ability to enable this to the huge mass of its users.

According to WhatsApp, it has created a system that will allow its users on Android and iOS to encrypt their backups with the help of encryption keys, and that it will allow two methods to do so. WhatsApp has also announced that call encryption will be optional – so you will need to look for the opt-in for this change.

According to the announcement, its new feature is expected to arrive “in the coming weeks” and as part of it you will be able to produce a 64-digit key that will be used to back up your calls in the cloud.

You can choose this encryption key whether to keep it as independent as before, on a small note that will probably be lost, in your favorite password manager or keep it in a secure “safe” that Facebook will provide you – when you need to choose a password behind which it will be saved. WhatsApp clarifies that you can not use the encryption key without knowing your password – so you know that it can not really access your messages even if it keeps the key in its “safe”.

It is important to note that if you have chosen to switch to the end-to-end encrypted backup by receiving your 64-digit encryption key and not by creating a password that will keep the key on WhatsApp servers, once you lose this key you will not be able to access the backups you have already encrypted.

WhatsApp said it would let users know more and more times that this could happen – to reduce the number of instances of users resent having all their conversations locked forever because they lost the note on which they wrote the encryption key.

In addition, a spokesman for the company said that once you switch to an encrypted backup – any backup you had in the past will be deleted, so you do not have any old version of your calls to which you can switch. If you lost the encryption key, you lost the calls.