Someone hacking into any of your personal networking sites or chatting app is not less than a nightmare coming true. If it is something like Whatsapp, which we all use to transfer texts, images, audio and video files among our friends and family, then it is a real problem. First, we want to inform you that Whatsapp uses a tough security method to protect the user’s data, which cannot be hacked or cracked even by a professional hacker. It is known as end-to-end encryption, which means that whenever a message is sent to the recipient, no one else can access that content, not even Whatsapp. It is like the message is a lock and only its recipient has the key. Still, if you will not follow some basic steps, then your Whatsapp account is in danger.
To avoid any such unfortunate event, we are giving you eight simple tips to improve your Whatsapp chat security
- Use phone lock
The first step is to keep your device locked. Using a pin fingerprint lock will not only improve Whatsapp chat security but also protect whatever else you are storing in the smartphone. If someone takes or stoles the phone in your absence, they cannot unlock it.
- Beware of unknown URLs
It is very easy to avoid any scam or any message that looks suspicious. Such messages generally offer something in return, like 30 days free Netflix, free iPhones etc. Do not click on unknown links or never forward such messages to your friends. Apart from that, always download updates from the Play Store. In case you have any doubt on the message received, please Google the same to verify.
- Activate two-step verification
Following the step will ask you for a pin once you configure Whatsapp on another handset or whenever you verify existing mobile number on Whatsapp. Give your account an extra layer of security.
To access two-step verification, navigate to Settings>Account>Two-Step Verification and follow the given steps.
- Disable cloud backup
Whatsapp backs the messages to iCloud or Google Drive depending on the platform. Backups are beneficial when you reinstall Whatsapp and want to recover old messages. The problem is that the backups are not encrypted. If you lose an unsecured phone then the thief can recover the old messages or even hackers can compromise your account to get those messages.
To change the settings, select Settings>Chats>Chat Backup>Tap on Back up to Google Drive/iCloud and select Never. Once you will choose Never, there will not be any backups to restore until you use any external storage media for the same.
- Use the official version of Whatsapp1
There are numerous third-party versions of Whatsapp with cool features but do not get attracted. Such versions cannot guarantee any security or privacy. So, always use the official version knowing that nothing gonna happen to your chats or media.
- Keep your display image safe from unknowns
Whatsapp allows you to hide the profile image from people who are not saved in contacts. To access the option, select Settings>Account>Privacy. Select Profile photo and select – My contacts.
- Check security codes
Once you connect and start chatting with any of your contacts, a security code is generated and it will be the same for you and your contact forever. If you match the code with your chatting partner and see any changes in the letter or numbers, it means your account has been accessed by someone else.
To check the code, tap on the profile image of any contact and select Encryption. You will see a long alphanumeric code.
- Activate Security Notifications
Switch on this option of “Show Security Notifications: if you want Whatsapp to automatically notify you about any security code changes. To access it, please select Settings>Account>Security and toggle the option. Ask your friends to follow the same.
- Use Whatsapp web securely
The new Whatsapp web has made it easy to read and reply the messages from a computer, even if the Android is not around. Once you scan the QR code from the smartphone, it works without any problem. You will not encounter any problem until and unless you are using your own computer, but what if you logged in to a public computer? Anyone can read all your personal chats and see shared images. To avoid such unfortunate situation, always remember to log out from all computers. It will keep showing on your smartphone until the Web version of Whatsapp is logged in, tap on it and log out.
- Lock Whatsapp
To make Whatsapp account more secure, one of the best technique is to use a third party app lock. Download something like AppLock or MAX AppLock that can protect any of the apps installed your phone, including Whatsapp.
- Hide images from the gallery
Whatsapp automatically saves any shared image received to the gallery. But, you can deactivate this feature to add another layer of security.
Explore the Whatsapp images folder and create a file named .nomedia. Restart the phone and next time onward, images received from Whatsapp will not be saved.
- Hide last seen
You may think that hiding the last seen cannot be a security measure. But if someone is following your online activities and already finding a chance to hack into any of your accounts then you may add the last piece of information yourself. So, navigate to Settings>Account>Privacy. Select last seen as Nobody.
Security is one thing, but if your boss comes to know that you are checking Whatsapp messages at your office desk or inside an office meeting, then you will be answerable. And yes, if you turn it off you will not be able to see the last seen of your contacts.
- Be careful about the conversation
Last suggestion, but always to keep in mind. Whenever you are using digital media to exchange messages, avoid sharing bank details, credit card details or any other personal information that can be used against you. Technology is to serve us but it is only beneficial if we take some precautionary measures while using it.