WhatsApp could get this huge security upgrade — what you need to know

(Image credit: Sergei Konkov\TASS via Getty Images)

WhatsApp has long been seen as a pretty secure messaging service, and it could be getting even safer to use, thanks to upcoming fingerprint login support. 

WhatsApp is more often than not used on mobile devices where biometric security is rife. But to log into the desktop or web app version you need to scan a QR code with a handset that’s linked to your phone number. 

However, WABetaInfo found reference in the latest beta for WhatsApp on Android that indicates such authentication can be used through biometrics instead.  

When logging into the desktop and web versions of WhatsApp, you need to have your phone handy so you can aim its rear camera at a QR code to then authenticate that you are logging into a WhatsApp account that's linked to your phone number. 

It’s not exactly a difficult process, but it’s not a very intuitive way of logging in. And some phones can be picky when it comes to scanning QR codes. 

But it looks like the addition of a fingerprint authentication process will make that a lot easier. Granted, it still means you’ll still need to have an Android phone nearby, but at least you won’t have to stop and scan a QR code. 

Speed and convenience is what the update will bring in if it comes to the full version of WhatsApp. We have no clue on when that might be, but such features are normally introduced and rolled out to WhatsApp pretty quickly. 

Ideally, we’d like to see a function built into the desktop and web versions of WhatsApp that allows the biometric security in a laptop, say Windows Hello or a built-in fingerprint scanner, to authenticate logins, That would mean you wouldn’t have to reach for the phone your WhatsApp account is linked to. 

WhatsApp is already tipped to enable users to use their WhatsApp account cross multiple devices without tying it to a phone number, so we can expect other upgrades to come to the messaging service in order to make its use pretty seamless. 

Roland Moore-Colyer

Roland Moore-Colyer a Managing Editor at Tom’s Guide with a focus on news, features and opinion articles. He often writes about gaming, phones, laptops and other bits of hardware; he’s also got an interest in cars. When not at his desk Roland can be found wandering around London, often with a look of curiosity on his face.