Why You Should Encrypt Your WhatsApp Backups in iCloud – Lifehacker

Photo: Alberto Garcia Guillen (Shutterstock)

With over two billion active users, WhatsApp is one of the most popular messaging apps globallyand its also one of the few apps that offer end-to-end encryption by default. This means that no one other than you the other party can read your conversations. Even WhatsApp cant read your conversations because it doesnt have the key to un-encrypt your chats.

This was all true, except for one scenario: WhatsApp chats backed up to iCloud were all unencrypted, so if anyone got their hands on your iCloud backup, they could read all your messages pretty easily. But now, WhatsApp has an optional feature to protect your WhatsApp backups with the same two-factor authentication using a password or a secure key.

Before we begin, you should know that WhatsApp end-to-end encryption depends on a password or a 64-digit secure key. If you lose your password, you wont be able to restore your chats, so make sure you use a secure yet recognizable password. If you use something complicated, make sure to save it on your password manager (it can be iCloud Keychain or a third-party service like Bitwarden).

To get started, first update your WhatsApp application to the latest version. WhatsApp is slowly rolling this feature out to its two billion users, so if you dont see it yet, try again in a couple of days.

Open WhatsApp, and from the Settings tab, go to Chats. Here, select Chat Backups and tap the End-to-End Encrypted Backup button. Tap the Turn on button and from the next screen, choose the Create Password option.

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Screenshot: Khamosh Pathak

Here, create a password that includes at least six characters, and one letter. Then, tap the Next button.

Once everything is set up, tap the Create button to switch to the end-to-end encrypted backup. Give WhatsApp some time to transition to encrypted backups.

Screenshot: Khamosh Pathak

If you want to disable this feature, come back to Settings > Chats > Chat Backup > End-to-end Encrypted Backup > Turn off.

While WhatsApp has switched over to encrypted backups, your iPhone is still backing up the entire iPhone data to iCloud, in the same un-encrypted format. For the sake of security, we would suggest you disable iCloud backups altogether. To do this, open the Settings app and tap your Profile banner from the top. Then go to iCloud and disable the iCloud Backup option.

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Why You Should Encrypt Your WhatsApp Backups in iCloud - Lifehacker

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