Last year, top technology companies Apple, Google, and Microsoft jointly announced bringing more secure cross-platform login features to their devices. As promised all three big tech companies implemented them with the launch of Passkeys, a passwordless secure login feature on all devices.
Now, WhatsApp has joined the party and has announced support for Passkeys on its messenger app.
For the uninitiated, a Passkey is a short user ID alternative for a particular online account. This is a one-time process and once done, users need not have to set up multiple passwords for different accounts.
Users never have to memorize complex alphanumeric passwords or have to waste time scratching their heads trying to remember the answer to the trick questions.
Going forward, users will be able to log in to WhatsApp without any OTP or even remembering a password. The user can just open WhatsApp with just a face ID or fingerprint or with the PIN number of the phone’s lock screen.
The Meta-owned company said the passkey feature will be rolled out to WhatsApp through an update in phases, in the coming weeks.
And, the passkey feature will be initially available on the Android version of WhatsApp. There is no official word on when the iOS version will get it.
In a related development, WhatsApp is also working on another user privacy feature that would block the phone’s IP address and location during calls.
This is being tested in the latest beta versions of iOS and Android. The new option can be seen in the Privacy section >> Advanced >> Protect IP address in calls.
Once this feature is enabled, there won’t be leakage of location details, as the calls will be relayed through the secured WhatsApp servers. But, the call quality may suffer a bit, the company notes.
It will take some time before WhatsApp brings the new privacy feature to all.
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(Published 17 October 2023, 06:40 IST)