May 21, 2024

The move appears to put Meta at odds with the government again, which wants to strengthen protections online, in particular for children – but companies like Meta warn changes to the law to improve online safety could undermine the privacy of messages.

WhatsApp users will soon be able to lock and hide conversations, thanks to a new feature.

Chat Lock will remove a chat thread from the app’s regular onscreen inbox and place it into a new folder that can only be opened by a password or biometric, such as facial recognition or a fingerprint.

Calling it “one more layer of security”, Meta – WhatsApp’s parent company – added Chat Lock will protect “your most intimate conversations” and hide notifications from them.

As part of its privacy package, Meta allows WhatsApp users to encrypt their backups, block the ability to screenshot and make their messages disappear automatically.

Mark Zuckerberg, Meta’s chief executive officer, confirmed the new feature in a Facebook post.

He said: “New locked chats in WhatsApp make your conversations more private. They’re hidden in a password protected folder and notifications won’t show sender or message content.”

  

 

 

 

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