Monday, September 26, 2022

Seven WhatsApp security tips that you must know to stay safe

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WhatsApp is perhaps the most followed online call and message receiving social media application. Owned by Meta, the messenger service claims it has top-notch encryption features but it has been proved wrong in the past. 

There are seven simple steps that help keep data and privacy enhanced. 

Two-step verification

The two-step verification is one of the most ideal features for enhanced privacy. It can be enabled by going to settings then account and going to the two-step verification option. You will get a handy six-digit unique PIN number that can be used to switch to a different device. 

Scrutinizing for malicious links

WhatsApp users are often tricked through the spread of spam links and messages. They are not easy to differentiate. 

However, scrutinizing them is fairly easy. The user has to press it for a short while before the copy option comes up. Copy it and paste the link on the verification checking website with ScanURL, PhishTank, Norton Safe Web and others. 

Turning on security notifications

The security notifications aware users as to their chats are at risk of their compromise. It has end-to-end encryption between two devices that are in touch with each other. 

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It sends an alert to all the chats if one of them is moved to another location. In this way, the feature will inform other contacts if the account is hacked or being accessed from someplace else if turned on.

To enable the feature, go to Security notifications then navigate to WhatsApp Settings then Account/ Security and turn on the Security Notifications toggle.

Log out a lost old phone

It is difficult for the users to recover their phone which has been lost with a SIM inside it but the factory reset options are helpful in wiping the data from the phone.

However, if a user does not want access through the old phone, then get a duplicate SIM card and insert it into the new phone.

After downloading the application, use the new SIM for the OTP. The login from the device will immediately log you out from your old phone.

Use a different profile picture

A lot of information gathering can be done by simply getting a hold of your profile picture. A user’s profile picture is similar to the likes of other platforms such as Facebook or LinkedIn.

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All it takes is to reverse search on Google Images after downloading and taking a screenshot of the WhatsApp profile picture. This will give access to your Facebook pages which contain their details.

However, preventing this is easier than you think. All you need to do is hide your profile picture from unsaved numbers which can be down through WhatsApp Settings/ Account/ Privacy/ Profile photo and switch the option to ‘My contacts’.

Alternatively, you can also simply use a unique profile picture on WhatsApp that has not been used on any other platform.

Hide WhatsApp media from the gallery

WhatsApp images, GIFs and videos will not show in the gallery after they are hidden. The users can turn the feature off by going to WhatsApp Settings/ Chats/ Media Visibility. WhatsApp media files can only be seen through the application while other gallery applications will not be able to see the same.

Log out of WhatsApp

WhatsApp Web is useful when it comes to coordinating with colleagues and associates. However, leaving the data exposed will get you in trouble as the application provides indirect login after the browser is opened.

It is fairly easy. the user is required to hide their profile picture from unsaved numbers by navigating to WhatsApp Settings/ Account/ Privacy/ Profile photo and switching the option to ‘My contacts’. The user can use a unique profile picture that has not been on any other platform.

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