Everything you can do to make your WhatsApp more secure and private

WhatsApp is the leader in instant messaging in much of the world, since according to 2018 data it already exceeds the 1.5 billion users and with this app more than 60,000 million messages are exchanged. The trend also shows that its users continue to grow and that this will continue to happen in the coming years. This can be a compelling reason to try to make this application that we have on our mobile and that we use every day to communicate more secure and private. As has already been verified on occasion, the application is not free from cybercriminals or their fraudulent attempts to get hold of other people’s information.

End-to-end encryption

The messaging system itself has an automatic security model based on a end-to-end encryption. This allows that only the person who sends the message and the one who receives it can read the message that is shared, not even WhatsApp has access to the communications that are made with him. Each message also has its own unique lock and code. That is, as explained from the app, it does not keep a record of any messages on its servers once they are delivered. This security system also applies to calls.

Apart from this internal security model that the application has, users can improve it by activating or deactivating a series of actions that the messaging system has. For this we will have to access the Security and Privacy tabs.

iPhone installing WhatsApp (Pexels)

Last connection

If we do not want anyone to know when was the last time we connected, we have to go to the upper right and click on Settings, Account, Privacy and Last time. We can choose between Everyone, My contacts or Nobody. It is important to know that if you give this option those you choose will not be able to see your last connection, but you will not be able to see that of others either.

Profile Photo, Info and Status

If you don’t want the whole world to see your profile picture, you can also configure it to do so. You have to follow the same steps as in the previous case. When you get to the Privacy option, you choose who you want to see this image.

The exact same thing happens with the info. While with the “states” the possibilities vary. “My contacts” is marked by default, but they offer us alternatives: “My contacts except …” or “Only share with …”, and then you have to choose from your contact list who you want to exclude or add.

Read receipts

This refers to double check blue that appears when someone has read a message. This can be activated or deactivated from the Privacy screen, but you should also know that if you remove it, you will not be able to see the reading confirmation of the rest of the people with whom you interact.

WhatsApp

Notifications

Most WhatsApp users have notifications activated so that when a message is received they appear on the mobile screen. This has its advantages because this way you can see who has written to you and check if what they tell you is important or not. As a drawback is that if someone picks up the phone, they will be able to read them anyway.

So, if you want it, this possibility is also removed. In this case you have to access directly from Settings, where you will see that Notifications appear. Here you can do many things for both individual and group chats, from determining the notification tone, whether or not you want there to be vibration or for a light to appear on the top of the mobile and its color every time you receive a message , among others.

In this case you will have to turn off Notifications in high priorityas these are the ones that show you the previews at the top of the screen.

If you want to have or not Pop-up notifications you can also configure it. They are on this same screen and with the same name. When you click on it, you will see that these options appear: Never show a pop-up window, Only with the screen “on”, Only with the screen “off”, Always show a pop-up window. You will have to choose the one that suits you best.

Delete chats

It is possible that we do not want to keep the conversation of a chat permanently, so WhatsApp allows us to eliminate them without problem. For this we must to place ourselves on the chat in question. We will click on the upper part again. Here we will have to give again on the word More, the last of all options. On the next screen you have to choose Empty chat. If we want to keep it, we can choose Export chat with or without media files (if we choose the first option it will take much longer due to the weight) and choose an email where to direct it.

If we want to eliminate them all at once we will have to go back to Settings, Chats, Chat history. We will choose between Empty all chats or Delete all chats. From here we can archive them all or export one too.

WhatsApp 2

Avoid groups

This is a novel option that is is starting to install progressively, so not all users have it yet. It is activated from Settings, Privacy, Groups. By clicking on this last word, you can choose between Nobody, My contacts, Anyone.

Two-step verification

With the activation of this alternative you get to add more security. You go to Settings, Account, Verification in two steps, Apply. Is performance requires a PIN that you will have to enter when you re-register your phone number in the app.

Log out if you use it on your computer

If we use it on the computer, we must not forget to close the session, especially if we have opened it on a PC that is not ours. You have to go to Settings, WhatsApp Web, Desktop and click on Close all sessions.