In a recent official statement, a UN spokesperson said: “The UN does not consider WhatsApp a secure mechanism”. To this end, the UN has since June 2019 barred its officials from using the messaging app (for official communications) due to security concerns. However, what is the reason for this? Recall that after the hacking of Amazon CEO and Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos’ phone, there have been accusations here and there. UN experts believe that Saudi Arabia’s prince for the hacking of billionaire’s smartphone. According to forensic evidence from FTI Consulting, Bezos’ iPhone was compromised after one of Saudi’s crown prince sent a malicious video via WhatsApp.
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UN bans its senior officials from using WhatsApp for official communication
According to a UN spokesperson, Farhan Haq “Every senior UN official has been instructed to refrain from using WhatsApp for official communication since it is not a secure medium. So, I do not think the Secretary-General uses it”. In addition, he revealed that the instruction dates back to June last year.
However, the messaging app insists that it’s 1.5 billion users enjoys industry-leading security. Carl Woog, WhatsApp’s Director of Communications said “Every private message is secured via end-to-end encryption to prevent WhatsApp or unwanted third-party sources from viewing messages. Our encryption technology, developed together with Signal remains the best to date and is highly regarded by security experts,”
In all of these, there are a couple of professionals who believes that WhatsApp takes security seriously. Oded Vanunu, the owner of Checkpoint which regularly finds flaws in messaging apps said “ WhatsApp is taking security very seriously compared to others…Every application has vulnerabilities you can exploit in some way…Other instant messaging companies can dream of their kind of security procedures,” he said. While there are incessant threats to messaging apps, Mr. Vanunu believes that WhatsApp is particularly good at fixing them.