Facebook, Google and WhatsApp rumored to step up privacy-protection efforts
While Apple’s legal battles with the FBI, San Bernardino County, NYPD and US Department of Justice remain at a standstill, the tech giant’s many declared allies might be looking to take further action against potential government snooping on people’s private data and e-conversations.
The world’s most popular messaging application in particular will reportedly add voice call encryption before long to a set of security features that already includes end-to-end text protection. WhatsApp would thus become essentially impenetrable from the ground up, and unless crystal clear laws are passed mandating software developers to bypass such functions, it’ll be physically impossible for police authorities to enforce San Bernardino-like “cyber search warrants.”
Before you even think it, this can hardly be deemed a publicity stunt. For one thing, WhatsApp has recently surpassed a billion active users. And it’s dropped all subscription fees, so it’s bound to keep growing.
More importantly, a large part of the American population sides with law enforcement, not Apple, in the matter of the Syed Farooq-owned iPhone 5c and whether or not unlocking it would do more harm than good in the grand scheme. Finally, a Facebook executive was detained only a few weeks back in Brazil exactly because WhatsApp’s parent company argued it lacked the “technical ability” to decrypt messages exchanged by drug trafficking suspects.
Speaking of FB, the social network’s proprietary Messenger tool could gain extra security features of its own in the near future, and the same goes for Snapchat, Twitter, as well as Google’s Chrome browser and Gmail client.
The details of all these encryption advancements are unclear, but when companies like Google, Twitter and Facebook join forces with Apple, you can be certain you have the best of the best fighting for your privacy.
Source: The Guardian