WhatsApp rolls out face, fingerprint unlock feature for web

Instant messaging firm WhatsApp on Thursday said it will soon enable use of face or fingerprint unlock available on the mobile phones on WhatsApp Web and desktop to add a layer of protection.

“Today we’re putting even more security into WhatsApp Web and desktop, adding an additional layer of protection when you want to link your WhatsApp account to your computer,” the company said in a blogpost.

It added that for this, it will take advantage of face or fingerprint unlock where it is available on the mobile phone operating system. “In order to link WhatsApp Web or Desktop to your WhatsApp account you will now be asked to use your face or fingerprint unlock on your phone, before scanning a QR code from the phone to link your device,” it said.

This will limit the chance that a housemate or officemate can link devices to your WhatsApp account without you, as per WhatsApp.

The company, which has been facing severe criticism over an update to its privacy policy, added that the face and fingerprint authentication takes place on the user’s device “in a privacy preserving manner - by design, WhatsApp cannot access the biometric information stored by your device's operating system”.

The new security update for linking devices will be rolling out, alongside a visual redesign to the WhatsApp Web page on phones, to users with compatible devices over the coming weeks.

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Printable version | Apr 15, 2021 11:02:42 AM |

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