The new security feature by WhatsApp have accidentally entered into troubled waters in India as Indian telecom rules are not adhered to after this feature has been rolled out.
The announcement about this feature came close on the heels of a legal battle between Apple and FBI over the US agency's demand that the iPhone maker help unlock its mobile phones. Many Silicon Valley players had supported Apple citing that user data privacy needs to be respected.
"WhatsApp has always prioritised making your data and communication as secure as possible. And today, we're proud to announce that we've completed a technological development that makes WhatsApp a leader in protecting your private communication: full end-to-end encryption," WhatsApp founder Jan Koum said on the company blogpost.
He added that the latest version of the app will encrypt every call, message, photo, video, file and voice message that is sent on the platform by default, including group chats.
"No one can see inside that message. Not cybercriminals. Not hackers. Not oppressive regimes. Not even us. End-to-end encryption helps make communication via WhatsApp private - sort of like a face-to-face conversation," he said.
The post by Koum, who grew up in Soviet-era USSR during the Communist rule, said the fact that people couldn't speak freely was one of the reasons his family moved to the US.
He added that end-to-end encryption will ultimately represent the future of personal communication.
The blog highlighted that there are stories around sensitive records being improperly accessed or stolen and people's digital information and communication will be more vulnerable to attack in the years to come.
"Encryption is one of the most important tools governments, companies, and individuals have to promote safety and security in the new digital age. Recently there has been a lot of discussion about encrypted services and the work of law enforcement," he said.
WhatsApp's new encryption feature a potential security threat
Security agencies have expressed concern over the new encryption feature introduced by popular messaging giant WhatsApp saying it could be misused by anti- national elements for achieving their nefarious designs.
The just-introduced end-to-end encryption of WhatsApp will protect texts and voice calls and give no access to the security agencies, making it much tougher for them to tackle any situation arising out of messages, videos being circulated through the messaging service.
WhatsApp has puts out a one-line advisory to its users: Messages you send to this chat and calls are now secured with end-to-end encryption.
"The move is a potential security threat," said a security official.
(With inputs from agencies)