WhatsApp, the messaging giant owned by Meta, has announced the launch of a brand new feature, termed “Chat Lock”, aimed at increasing the security and privacy of individual or group conversations. This innovative functionality, which was previously in the testing phase, adds a higher degree of protection to users’ most private discussions.
The Chat Lock feature is designed to let users secure specific conversations behind a lock. To access these locked chats, users need to use their device password or biometric data, such as a fingerprint. Once a chat is locked, it is moved from the main inbox to a separate, secure folder. The feature also hides the contents of the locked chat from notifications, ensuring privacy even when the device is in use.
The implementation of this feature will be particularly useful for those who occasionally share their phones with others, offering an extra layer of security in such instances.
In addition to this, the messaging platform has announced plans to further enhance the Chat Lock feature. Future developments will include lock options for companion devices and the ability to create custom passwords for chats, providing the option for users to secure their chats with a unique password, separate from their phone password.
WhatsApp‘s Chat Lock feature is a significant addition to its existing privacy functionalities, such as end-to-end encryption, disappearing messages, and the ability to hide online status. While end-to-end encryption ensures that only the sender and receiver can read the messages, it does not protect against someone with unlocked access to the device. The introduction of Chat Lock fills this security gap.
The unveiling of the Chat Lock feature follows a series of recent updates from WhatsApp, including enhancements to polls and sharing options on the platform. These updates introduced the capability for users to create single-vote polls and to forward media with captions.
The Chat Lock feature has started rolling out and is expected to be available to all Android and iOS users soon.