WhatsApp backdoor allows snooping on encrypted messages

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/jan/13/whatsapp-backdoor-allows-snooping-on-encrypted-messages

A security backdoor that can be used to allow Facebook and others to intercept 
and read encrypted messages has been found within its WhatsApp messaging 
service.

Facebook claims that no one can intercept WhatsApp messages, not even the 
company and its staff, ensuring privacy for its billion-plus users. But new 
research shows that the company could in fact read messages due to the way 
WhatsApp has implemented its end-to-end encryption protocol.

Privacy campaigners said the vulnerability is a “huge threat to freedom of 
speech” and warned it can be used by government agencies to snoop on users who 
believe their messages to be secure. WhatsApp has made privacy and security a 
primary selling point, and has become a go to communications tool of activists, 
dissidents and diplomats.

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Boelter reported the backdoor vulnerability to Facebook in April 2016, but was 
told that Facebook was aware of the issue, that it was “expected behaviour” and 
wasn’t being actively worked on. The Guardian has verified the backdoor still 
exists.

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