WhatsApp introduces new privacy feature to mask IP address in calls
WhatsApp has introduced the 'Protect IP Address in Calls' feature to mask users' IP addresses and enhance privacy and security during calls. Know how it protects you and how to enable it.
Developers at Meta have embarked on a mission to a multitude of new features on WhatsApp lately. After years of waiting, the platform finally rolled out the ability to send photos and videos in HD resolution. Recently, it was also revealed that WhatsApp might allow users to create alternate profiles, and was even testing the feature. And now, WhatsApp could introduce yet another feature, one which doesn't add anything revolutionary, but increases your privacy and makes your user experience more secure. Know what's coming.
New WhatsApp feature
In a blog post, WhatsApp revealed that calling on the platform uses peer-to-peer connections which ensures faster data transfers resulting in the best possible audio quality. However, it has one major drawback - it requires users to reveal their IP addresses to each other. This means some of your data such as data provider and geographical location is visible to the other participant.
To mitigate this, WhatsApp has introduced a new privacy setting called ‘Protect IP Address in Calls'. Instead of a P2P connection, your calls are relayed through a server, meaning that your IP addresses are masked and not visible to the other participants. While group calls have always been relayed through a server, it wasn't the case with individual calls, but not anymore.
WhatsApp said, “We introduced a new feature on WhatsApp that allows you to protect your IP address during calls. With this feature enabled, all your calls will be relayed through WhatsApp's servers, ensuring that other parties in the call cannot see your IP address and subsequently deduce your general geographical location. This new feature provides an additional layer of privacy and security particularly geared towards our most privacy-conscious users.”
The platform has also announced that all the calls are still end-to-end encrypted, meaning that nobody at WhatsApp can listen to them. The ‘Protect IP Address in Calls' feature is being rolled out to Android and iOS users in a phased manner, meaning it is possible you won't see it on your device immediately.
How to turn on Protect IP Address in Calls
1. Head over to WhatsApp and open Settings.
2. Tap on Privacy and then Advanced.
3. Find the Protect IP address in the calls option and turn it on.
.Protect IP Address in Calls. is just one of the privacy features that WhatsApp has introduced in 2023, with another being ‘Silence Unknown Callers'.