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WhatsApp testing encryption for chat backups on Google Drive

A new update on WhatsApp's Android beta app shows UI changes for chat backups with encryption.

WhatsApp chat backups encryption
WhatsApp chat backups encryption (Bloomberg)

WhatsApp is reportedly working on encrypted and password-protected chat backups. WhatsApp is currently testing this feature and it’s expected to release it soon. A new update in WhatsApp’s beta app for Android shows some UI changes for the upcoming feature.

According to screenshots shared by WABetaInfo, WhatsApp is testing end-to-end encrypted backups for Google Drive. On Android, WhatsApp chats are backed up on Google Drive but aren’t encrypted unlike chats on the app. The feature is also explained as “Secure your message history and media on Google Drive from unauthorized access.” WhatsApp also shows what your current Google Drive backup size is for chats.

WhatsApp will keep this feature optional for users. Under chat backups, there’s an option to enable or disable encryption for chat backups. WhatsApp also displays “end-to-end encrypted” under the chat backup option. This will appear if your chat backups have encryption enabled. WhatsApp has made the UI changes to show that encryption is now available for chat backups in Google Drive.

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Not just encryption, WhatsApp is also working on passwords for these chat backups. This password will be required when the chat backups have to be restored. WhatsApp will also require you to verify your phone number to enable password protection for chat backups.

WhatsApp hasn’t revealed when it will release this feature for Android and iOS users. But it’s expected to launch soon. Encryption and password protection for WhatsApp chat backups will be very helpful since the messaging app is widely used and for not just personal but professional use as well.

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