Instant messaging app, WhatsApp, has introduced end-to-end encryption for its 1 billion users across all devices, including iPhones, Android, Windows, Blackberry and Nokia phones.
For all users with the most recent version of WhatsApp, every message, photo, video, file and WhatsApp call made will now be completely secure. This means that nobody but the sender and receiver of the message or call will be able to access their contents – not even WhatsApp employees.
A statement by WhatsApp CEO and co-founder Jan Koum, reads:
We’ve been working for the past two years to give people better security over their conversations on WhatsApp. I’m proud of our team for hitting this milestone: now every message, photo, video, file, and voice message you send, is end-to-end encrypted by default if you and the people you message use the latest version of our app. Even your group chats and voice calls are encrypted.
People deserve security. It makes it possible for us to connect with our loved ones. It gives us the confidence to speak our minds. It allows us to communicate sensitive information with colleagues, friends, and others. We’re glad to do our part in keeping people’s information out of the hands of hackers and cyber-criminals.
The move comes in the wake of Apple’s refusal to create a backdoor into the iPhone 5c belonging to one of the San Bernadino shooters. All Apple devices are end-to-end encrypted, which means, for instance, messages, calls and photos on iPhones cannot even be accessed by Apple.
Koum came out in support of Apple, saying:
“Our freedom and liberty is at stake.”