• The chat database is already encrypted now (excluding media), but the algorithm is reversible and it’s not end-to-end encrypted.
• Local Android backups will be compatible with this feature.
The chat DB and media will be encrypted using a password that only you know. https://t.co/WAliLUnF18
— WABetaInfo (@WABetaInfo) March 8, 2021
WABetaInfo already reported last year that WhatsApp was working on this possibility. However, since then no further information on the progress had been received. As can be seen in the images, the messaging application will give the user the option to use this functionality. For it, an eight-digit password will need to be set. “This password will be necessary when restoring from the backup,” they recall from WhatsApp. After this, the ‘app’ requests the user’s phone number to associate it with the password. The portal also warns that “it will not be able to help recover forgotten passwords”, so the user will have to make an effort to remember it.
It should be remembered that the backups that the user stores on cloud platforms, such as Google Drive and iCloud are not end-encrypted. This implies that the companies offering the service could access the information. The objective of the new tool is to prevent a malicious third party from accessing the internet user’s chat history.
At the moment the possibility of using a password in the backup of chats is in beta phase, which implies that it is not available to users. WABetaInfo has not provided information on its release date. Keep in mind that, at this time, WhatsApp is working on several new features, among which stands out the one that will allow us to use the same ‘app’ account on several devices. A tool that Telegram users have enjoyed for years.