WhatsApp has recently activated end-to-end encryption in its latest update for Android devices. This encryption would effectively make any messages sent between users unreadable by anyone else; including WhatsApp.
This implementation makes WhatsApp the most secure messaging app. With such a large amount of users on WhatsApp, this is one of the biggest implementation of end-to-end encryption ever for a messaging service.
However, this encryption does not apply to group messages, videos, and photos uploaded to WhatsApp. WhatsApp hopes to extent its encryption to these features as soon as it can, but declines to give any time frame. This encryption has been in the works for the past six months, right after Facebook has acquired WhatsApp. Obviously, this is something that cannot be rushed.
Apple’s iMessage service utilizes end-to-end encryption as well, but in comparison to WhatsApp’s encryption method, though, it is not as secure. WhatsApp utilizes the TextSecure open-source software for their encryption, which means that even WhatsApp itself cannot decrypt messages between users, even if they wanted to. iMessage’s encryption method, on the other hand, is done by Apple themselves. Theoretically then, Apple could decrypt user messages if it intends to do so.
No word yet on when the WhatsApp update would hit iOS devices.