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Your WhatsApp messages will be getting an extra layer of security

The next update for Android and iOS will include end-to-end encryption, which will make sure the only people getting a message are the sender and receiver

Image: Edward Smith/EMPICS Entertainment

TRADITIONALLY, IF YOU wanted to keep your messages completely safe, you would have to resort to one of the encrypted instant messaging apps like Telegram. Now one of the most popular instant messaging apps is adding a new feature that will make its content more secure.

WhatsApp has more than 600 million users worldwide and all users who update to the latest version of Android will get end-to-end encryption features.

This ensures that WhatsApp isn’t able to decrypt the messages, even if it’s asked to recover them by the law. The only people who have access to messages are the sender and the receiver.

The feature is activated by default and WhatsApp partnered with Open Whisper Systems, a open-source group that works on providing secure communications.

The group is best known for developing secure calls and messaging apps like RedPhone, and TextSecure, but it says that bringing this to WhatsApp “represents the largest deployment of end-to-end encryption in history“.

So far it’s only Android that will support this feature (iOS will be arriving soon) and it doesn’t apply yet to group messages or media messages, but Open Whisper Systems says it will be rolling out support for those next, as well as for other platforms, although it warns that it will take a while before all platforms are fully supported.

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