The WhatsApp messenger uses end-to-end encryption of chats; which means that it is practically impossible for outsiders to access information from correspondence. However, the backups of chats that users store in the cloud are potentially much less secure. The latest beta version of the messenger for Android, number 18.104.22.168, has a function to encrypt backups of chats in the cloud.
The innovation should provide a reliable backup of the chat history and media files used in them. However, the service warns that if the user forgets his password, he will permanently lose access to the backup and WhatsApp will not be able to help restore access in any way. Users who are satisfied with these conditions need only to download the beta version of the messenger or wait for the function to appear in the public version.
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In addition, WhatsApp is testing a version of the software that runs simultaneously on multiple devices and supports end-to-end encryption regardless of whether the user’s smartphone is involved.
How does the encryption work? You need to choose a password that will be in use to encrypt your future backups. You should always insert the password when you restore a backup; otherwise you won’t be able to restore your chat history. This password is private and it’s not shared with WhatsApp, Facebook, Google or Apple.
End-to-end encrypted backups also support an encryption key that can be in use to restore your password. It can only contain numeric digits and lowercase letters between ‘a’ and ‘f’. If you lose this key, WhatsApp cannot help you to recover it.
New beta of WhatsApp allows you to use your account on multiple gadgets without a smartphone
Until recently, users could not use the WhatsApp application for a desktop computer or other device without a connected smartphone present on the Web, tied to an account. The new beta version allows you to completely exclude the smartphone from the chain of connections.
Back in June, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and WhatsApp CEO Will Cathcart talked about the technical difficulty of organizing end-to-end encryption on multiple devices without a smartphone. Based on a new blog post by Cathcart, the problem has finally been resolved.
The head of the company shared both the schemes of the old version of the messenger and the new one; which does not need the mediation of the “main” device.
For now, the beta is available to a limited group of testers already in the WhatsApp beta program. The developers themselves are reporting activities related to improving performance and adding additional features. It is worth noting that the corresponding functionality should have been added a long time ago; competing messengers like Telegram have had similar capabilities for a long time.