WhatsApp now requires biometric authentication for PC and web access

You'll have to use your phone's face or fingerprint unlock to link your account.

Sponsored Links

Mariella Moon
January 28th, 2021
In this article: WhatsApp, biometrics, desktop, web, news, gear
WhatsApp
WhatsApp

You’ll now have to confirm your identity using your biometric information to link a WhatsApp account to the PC or the web. The Facebook—owned company has added a layer of protection to its apps in order to limit the chances of somebody else linking to your account without your knowledge or permission. As long as the phone you’re using has face or fingerprint unlock switched on, WhatsApp will ask you to go through the authentication process when you link your account to the service’s desktop app or web version.

After the service verifies your identity, you’ll then have to scan a QR code with your phone. The new biometric authentication feature is active by default, and the only way not to trigger it when linking your account is to completely switch off face or fingerprint unlock. WhatsApp, which will soon implement a revised privacy policy that allows it to share information with Facebook, says it won’t have access to your biometrics at all and will conduct the authentication process through your phone’s OS.

WhatsApp’s new security feature will work alongside another, which send your phone notifications whenever somebody logs into your account on the web or a computer. The company seems to be working on more features for its non-phone apps, as well, revealing in its announcement that it’s “going to be adding a lot more functionality to [its] apps for Mac and Windows, as well as the Web” this year.

All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Popular on Engadget