SECURE: New WhatsApp feature will help keep your messages safe from hackers
Worried about your private or overly revealing WhatsApp messages falling into the wrong hands? Don’t, WhatsApp has just launched a new feature to help keep your data safe.Instead of making you remember a lengthy password or answer 14 security questions, however, WhatsApp will improve your security with the addition of two-step verification.
The opt-in feature adds a second layer of security protection by getting you to enter a pre-set, personal six-digit passcode when you attempt to verify your phone number on WhatsApp.
For those who forget their custom six-digit passcode, users can also assign their email address to their account for easier verification.
WhatsApp started testing the security-boosting feature last November when the service popped up in the Android and Windows Phone beta versions of the app.This is the first time it has been rolled out to all of WhatsApp’s more than one billion users, however.
Stating that the service provides “added security,” WhatsApp revealed how the new service will work in a dedicated blog post.
“When you have two-step verification enabled, any attempt to verify your phone number on WhatsApp must be accompanied by the six-digit passcode that you created using this feature,” the firm stated.
Detailing what happens if you forget your passcode or attempt to set-up WhatsApp on another device without it, the company added: “If you have two-step verification enabled, your number will not be permitted to reverify on WhatsApp within 7 days of last using WhatsApp without your passcode.”Thus, if you forget your own passcode, but did not provide an email to disable two-step verification, even you will not be permitted to reverify on WhatsApp within 7 days of last using WhatsApp.
“After these 7 days, your number will be permitted to reverify on WhatsApp without your passcode, but you will lose all pending messages upon reverifying – they will be deleted.
“If your number is reverified on WhatsApp after 30 days of last using WhatsApp, and without your passcode, your account will be deleted and a new one will be created upon successfully reverifying.”
So, how do you enable WhatsApp’s new two-step verification? Well, first you’ll need to ensure you’ve updated your app to the latest version of the software.Once this is done, you’ll need to head to Settings > Account > Two-step verification within the app.
Although the new feature is designed to stop hackers accessing your account without your permission, WhatsApp has warned users about how to avoid further potential risks.
“If you receive an email to disable two-step verification, but did not request this, do not click on the link. Someone could be attempting to verify your phone number on WhatsApp,” the company stated.