The most popular messenger WhatsApp has not been publicly announced, but in the instructions for creating backup copies of chats in Google Drive, it noted that backups of user correspondence are not protected by end-to-end encryption.
As it became known,
WhatsApp entered into an agreement with Google on free backups for messenger users. This step was taken for the sake of the messenger users – now the saved copies of messages are not counted in the user’s memory limit in the Google Drive service.
Thus, from now on, users of the messenger can save any number of large WhatsApp chats with all the photos, videos and other files present in Google Drive. At the same time, all 15 GB of free space provided by Google Drive can be completely spent on other purposes.
The audience of the WhatsApp messenger is almost 1.5 billion active users, who send more than 60 billion messages daily. At the same time, according to the messenger’s own statistics, many of the users have more than 2 GB of backup copies of their chats. Given such volumes of information, the agreement between WhatsApp and Google is essential for the messenger.
Note that previously saved WhatsApp chats were saved to Google Drive, taking up space from the provided free memory space – now messenger backups are not counted in this limit.
Backups are usually created by messenger users on various cloud platforms. Their presence allows, when changing a smartphone, to completely transfer all chats to a new device.
The WhatsApp developers, in the instructions on how to create backups to Google Drive, posted on the FAQ page, officially informed users that the backup copies of chats that they save in the storage from Google are not protected by end-to-end encryption.
Note that iOS users (Apple) should not be intimidated by the lack of end-to-end encryption in WhatsApp backups on Google Drive – the iPhone has an option that allows you to save chats to iCloud, where all data is encrypted by default. However, Android users have no choice – they can only save chats to Google Drive.
Thus, chats in Google Drive that are not protected by end-to-end encryption can be accessed by both hackers and specialized departments of law enforcement agencies.
Users are advised to resort to mandatory security measures when communicating in a digital environment – set a complex password for the account and use two-factor authentication.
In connection with the new agreement, in order to save space on Google Drive, it was decided that backups of WhatsApp users that have not been updated for over a year will be automatically deleted from Google Drive. The new storage rules will take effect on November 12, 2018.
The ProTarif.info editors advise all WhatsApp users to manually back up their chats to ensure the safety of their correspondence, photos and videos.
How do I back up WhatsApp messages?
You need to connect to a stable Internet signal, preferably through a fixed Wi-Fi point, open the messenger, go to Settings, then to Chats, where you need to find and press the big green “Backup” button in the “Backup” tab. That’s all. We recommend that you follow the process and make sure it is completed successfully.