WhatsApp's End-to-End Encrypted Chat Backups Feature Now Rolling Out

WhatsApp end-to-end encrypted backups are now rolling out for iPhone users, Facebook has announced. Until now, WhatsApp let users back up their chat history to ‌‌iCloud‌‌, but the messages and media contained in the backups weren't protected by WhatsApp's end-to-end encryption while in ‌‌Apple's cloud servers‌.

Whatsapp E2EE Backups
Since Apple holds the encryption keys for ‌‌iCloud‌‌ Backup, a subpoena of Apple or an unauthorized ‌‌iCloud‌‌ hack could have potentially allowed access to WhatsApp messages backed up there. Apple was reportedly pressured to not add encryption to ‌‌iCloud‌‌ Backups after the FBI complained.

Going forward, however, users can create a password or 64-bit key to protect their backup in cloud-based storage, whether they're saved in ‌iCloud‌ or Google Drive.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg made the announcement, saying that users can generate a password of their choice or a 64-digit encryption key that only they know in order to access their WhatsApp chat backups.

While end-to-end encrypted messages you send and receive are stored on your device, many people also want a way to back up their chats in case they lose their phone. Starting today, we are making available an extra, optional layer of security to protect backups stored on Google Drive or iCloud with end-to-end encryption. No other global messaging service at this scale provides this level of security for their users' messages, media, voice messages, video calls, and chat backups.

You can now secure your end-to-end encrypted backup with either a password of your choice or a 64-digit encryption key that only you know. Neither WhatsApp nor your backup service provider will be able to read your backups or access the key required to unlock it.

The encrypted chat backups feature will gradually be rolled out to more than two billion users on Android and iOS, and will be available in every market where WhatsApp is operational, which could put the company at odds with some governments.

Notably, Apple is not making its upcoming ‌‌iCloud‌‌+ Private Relay encrypted browsing feature available to users living under certain authoritarian regimes, including China, Belarus, Colombia, Egypt, Kazakhstan, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkmenistan, Uganda, and the Philippines. According to Apple, "regulatory reasons" are preventing the Private Relay feature from launching in those countries.

Top Rated Comments

nikaru Avatar
8 months ago
At this stage I think no one trusts Facebook, even if they say to have implemented the most cutting-edge, alien-level encryption technology, that cannot be decrypted even with the most state-of-the-art military-grade quantum computer.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Serban55 Avatar
8 months ago
I trust you mark zuckerberg ('https://www.google.com/search?client=safari&rls=en&q=mark+zuckerberg&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8') !!! i trust you with my sword
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
BootsWalking Avatar
8 months ago
Zuckerberg to the public: No other global messaging service at this scale provides this level of security for their users' messages, media, voice messages, video calls, and chat backups.

Zuckerberg behind closed doors: People Who Trust Me Are "Dumb F*cks"
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
seble Avatar
8 months ago
A 64 bit key? Really, not even 128? What's the point...
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
justperry Avatar
8 months ago
I still get these nagging pop-ups to agree to their terms, guess what.....Nope, not gonna agree.

Encrypted backups though is always good news.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Denzo Avatar
8 months ago
I moved to signal after that debacle with WhatsApp. I know I woknt be missed but not really into all the Facebook Insta WhatsApp stuff.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Related Stories

s960 2MS Home Office sign 960x640

UK Government Readies Anti-Encryption Publicity Campaign to 'Keep Children Safe' Online

Monday January 17, 2022 4:26 am PST by
The British Government is reportedly preparing a publicity attack on end-to-end encryption in an effort to mobilize public opinion against the technology by framing it as a child safety issue, with its main aim being to derail Facebook's plan to end-to-end encrypt its Messenger platform. According to Rolling Stone, the Home Office has hired the M&C Saatchi advertising agency to plan the...
Whatsapp Feature

Facebook Reportedly Researching Ways to Use Encrypted WhatsApp Messages for Targeted Advertisements

Tuesday August 3, 2021 7:24 am PDT by
Facebook is researching ways to analyze encrypted data, such as WhatsApp messages, without actually decrypting the information, according to a new report from The Information. The report cites that Facebook has confirmed it is building a team of artificial intelligence researchers to "study ways of analyzing encrypted data without decrypting it." While it is still early in development, the...
time machine initial backup error

Initial Time Machine Backup Failures Increasingly Being Reported by Mac Users

Wednesday December 8, 2021 3:30 am PST by
Apple's built-in Time Machine backup solution for macOS appears to be causing problems for some Mac users running the latest versions of Monterey and Big Sur, based on a steady trickle of reports on both the MacRumors Forums and Reddit. While some users are complaining of different issues with Time Machine on different Macs and versions of macOS that are hard to replicate, one common...
iCloud General Feature

Apple's iCloud Service Experiencing Outage

Wednesday January 26, 2022 8:58 am PST by
Some of Apple's iCloud services appear to be experiencing an outage, based on a multitude of reports that MacRumors has received and hundreds of complaints on Twitter. According to the Apple System Status page, there are issues with iCloud Backup, iCloud Mail, iCloud Storage Upgrades, iCloud.com, iMessage, and Game Center. Some users are unable to log into the iCloud website, and others are...
imazing header purple

MacRumors Giveaway: Win an iPhone 13 Pro or Pro Max From iMazing

Friday September 17, 2021 11:05 am PDT by
For this week's giveaway, we've teamed up with iMazing to offer MacRumors readers a chance to win an iPhone 13 Pro or iPhone 13 Pro Max with up to 1TB of storage and a copy of the iMazing software, which is ideal for iPhone backups and management. If you're unfamiliar with iMazing, it's Mac and Windows software that provides a range of handy tools for iOS device management, and it offers...
Whatsapp Feature

WhatsApp Chief Confirms iPad App is a Possibility: 'We'd Love to Do It'

Friday January 28, 2022 12:03 pm PST by
There could be a WhatsApp app for iPad coming in the near future, according to WhatsApp chief Will Cathcart. In an interview with The Verge, Cathcart said that people have long been asking for an iPad app, and that the company would "love to do it." Though Cathcart did not commit to a release date for a WhatsApp iPad app, the Meta-owned company already has the underlying structure in place...
Whatsapp Feature

WhatsApp Now Hides Your 'Last Seen' Status From Strangers

Tuesday December 14, 2021 1:00 am PST by
WhatsApp has made a privacy change to prevent people on the messaging platform from viewing the "Last Seen" status of users whom they have never chatted with, according to the latest report from independent feature specialist WABetaInfo. As regular WhatsApp users will know, the "Last Seen" status of a contact sits atop the conversation thread, informing you when that contact last opened the...
whatsapp disappearing messages default

WhatsApp Makes Disappearing Messages a Default Option With Multiple Durations

Tuesday December 7, 2021 2:13 am PST by
WhatsApp says it is rolling out a new option that makes disappearing messages the default behavior for all new chats on the end-to-end encrypted messaging platform. It's been over a year since WhatsApp launched its disappearing messages feature, which allows messages, photos, and videos to be marked to disappear after seven days. The feature can be enabled for direct messages and in groups...

Popular Stories

iPhone 14 Pro Purple Front and Back MacRumors Exclusive

iPhone 14 Pro Renders Highlight Multiple Design Changes

Wednesday May 25, 2022 8:56 am PDT by
Leaker Jon Prosser today shared ostensibly accurate renders of the iPhone 14 Pro, providing the most accurate look yet at what the device could look like when it launches later this year. In the latest video on YouTube channel Front Page Tech, Prosser revealed renders of the iPhone 14 Pro made by Apple concept graphic designer Ian Zelbo, highlighting a range of specific design changes...
iPad Pro USB C Feature Coral

Deals: Apple's iPad Pro Reaches Up to $449 Off in Amazon's Latest Sales

Wednesday May 25, 2022 10:09 am PDT by
Amazon is marking down a wide variety of 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro models this week, with prices starting as low as $749.00 for the 11-inch tablet. You'll find the full list of sales below, all of which can be found on Amazon. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these vendors. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep...
apple account card

Wallet App Now Supports Apple Account Cards on iOS 15.5

Wednesday May 25, 2022 5:01 pm PDT by
Apple appears to have recently updated the Wallet app to allow users to add an Apple Account Card, which displays the Apple credit balance associated with an Apple ID. If you receive an App Store or Apple Store gift card, for example, it is added to an Apple Account that was previously visible in the App Store and Apple Store apps. As of today, the Apple Account balance can also be added to...
iphone 13 pro max display bleen

iPhone 14 Max Reportedly Weeks Behind Schedule [Updated]

Thursday May 26, 2022 7:25 am PDT by
The iPhone 14 Max is currently behind schedule by around three weeks, according to Haitong International Securities analyst Jeff Pu. Yesterday, Nikkei Asia reported that at least one iPhone 14 model was three weeks behind schedule due to the impact of lockdowns on Apple's supply chains in China, but it was not clear which iPhone 14 model this related to. Now, Pu has clarified that the model...
iPhone 13 Always On Feature

iPhone 14 Pro Screen Refresh Rate Upgrade Could Allow for Always-On Display

Tuesday May 24, 2022 7:23 am PDT by
Last year's iPhone 13 Pro models were the first of Apple's smartphones to come with 120Hz ProMotion displays, and while the two iPhone 14 Pro models will continue to feature the technology, their screens could well boast expanded refresh rate variability this time round. To bring ProMotion displays to the ‌iPhone 13 Pro models‌, Apple adopted LTPO panel technology with variable refresh...
Apple Tap to Pay iPhone

Apple Stores Rolling Out iPhone-to-iPhone Contactless Payments Starting Today

Wednesday May 25, 2022 6:54 am PDT by
Apple in February unveiled a new "Tap to Pay on iPhone" feature that will allow compatible iPhones to accept payments via Apple Pay, contactless credit and debit cards, and other digital wallets, with no additional hardware required. Apple began testing the feature at its Apple Park Visitor Center earlier this month, and now Bloomberg's Mark Gurman has tweeted that the feature will begin...
apple tv 4k design green

Apple Releases tvOS 15.5.1 for Apple TV HD and Apple TV 4K

Wednesday May 25, 2022 9:42 am PDT by
Apple today released tvOS 15.5.1, a minor update to the tvOS operating system that first launched in September 2021. tvOS 15.5.1 comes about 10 days after the launch of tvOS 15.5. tvOS 15.5.1 can be downloaded over the air on the Apple TV through the Settings app by going to System > Software Update. ‌‌‌‌‌‌Apple TV‌‌‌‌‌‌ owners who have automatic software updates...