Earlier this week, WhatsApp made an announcement that it would increase its security with the help of encryption.
Of course, for its users and fans, this was a huge announcement that laid their minds to rest, seeing as from now on, the messages will be read only by the people who send and receive the messages.
This is an opportunity for WhatsApp to up their game in the industry, being a step ahead of other messaging services which only encrypt the conversations between you and them.
WhatsApp’s security can’t be 100% fail-proof, some data actually being retained by the app, which could make it prone to being hacked at some point.
For example, some data kept could be the so-called metadata, which basically means the date and time, as we can see on WhatsApp’s Privacy page.
One of the passages that we can find on the page reads:
WhatsApp may retain date and time stamp information associated with successfully delivered messages and the mobile phone numbers involved in the messages, as well as any other information which WhatsApp is legally compelled to collect
Roughly meaning that the app can see the interlocutors and the date and time when the message was sent. And if WhatsApp has this type of information on its servers, then kackers or even the Government can access it if needed.
In the past, metadata was proved to be quite a controversial issue, because it can be used for various reasons other than what intended. For example, while some people believe that it can help gather information about the users’ lives, others consider that metadata can be used only to find out general information about the users, being rather limited.
And seeing as Facebook purchased WhatsApp recently, the metadata can also be used in advertising, without the user’s consent.