WhatsApp Experiments With End-to-end Encryption For Cloud Chat Backups
Regardless of the fact that WhatsApp provides end-to-end encryption for chats, this does not apply to messages (or other media) backed up to Google Drive or iCloud. They are instead only protected by server-side encryption, and the respective cloud services can decrypt them if necessary. If you value your privacy, this is not an ideal situation.
It was recently discovered that WhatsApp was working on a new feature that would allow you to encrypt your chat backups with a password. The feature was recently rolled out for beta users, but it was later removed in a subsequent update.
According to WABetaInfo, the feature was released as part of WhatsApp beta version 188.8.131.52. It functioned by requiring you to enter a password when encrypting future backups, and the password is always required when restoring a backup. The password is completely confidential and is not shared with any of the services it passes through, including WhatsApp, Facebook, Google, and Apple. If you prefer, you can use a 64-digit encryption key instead of a password, though you will never be able to restore your chats if you lose it.
Only numeric numbers and lowercase characters between a and f make up the encryption key. Because WhatsApp will not be able to assist you recover your chats if you lose the encryption key, you should keep it safe. It protects your chats from unwanted access and can even function on local backups, allowing you to store them safely wherever you wish without the fear of them being stolen and accessed by others.
As previously stated, due to connection challenges, the rollout of end-to-end encryption for cloud chat backups has been temporarily halted; however, it is expected to resume soon. Make sure you have the most recent version of WhatsApp downloaded from Google Play or an APK hosting site, so you can use the feature as soon as it becomes available.