It’s nice to finally be able to post a little good news! It seems that WhatsApp messaging platform have added TextSecure end-to-end encryption to their android app, and their iPhone offering should follow suit shortly.
The beauty of the TextSecure solution is that it uses forward secrecy, which uses a fresh cryptographic key for each and every message.
I live in hope that facebook will also extend this technology to their facebook messenger and that other IM applications pick up on this too.
More than 600 million WhatsApp users are about to benefit from default end-to-end encryption, which should prevent any snoops spying on their communications.
The security boost comes after the Facebook-owned messaging provider contracted Open Whisper Systems, the creator of the TextSecure encrypted text app, to incorporate its technology into WhatsApp.
The new feature is currently only available in the Android version of WhatsApp, but Open Whisper Systems co-founder Moxie Marlinspike confirmed to the Guardian an iOS alternative was in the works. There will soon be support for encrypted messaging for group chat and media messages, too.
Systems that use end-to-end encryption are hard to break because the key that unscrambles communicationsis only stored on users’ phones. In previous versions of WhatsApp, those keys were also stored by servers as well as users’ phones, giving Facebook or WhatsApp admins access to messages.