WhatsApp passes the 2 billion users

WhatsApp has just passed the 2 billion user mark worldwide. The instant messaging application, acquired by Facebook 6 years ago, has attracted a billion users in less than 3 years. The American firm took advantage of the announcement to highlight the default "inviolable" encryption of messages exchanged on the application. 

"We are pleased to share that WhatsApp now has more than two billion users worldwide," said WhatsApp in a blog post published on Wednesday, January 12, 2020. As a reminder, the messaging application was developed by two former Yahoo employees and acquired by Facebook in 2014 for $19 billion. WhatsApp crossed the billion user mark in July 2017, less than 3 years ago.

"We know that the more we connect, the more we need to protect. As we spend more of our lives online, protecting our conversations is more important than ever," explains WhatsApp. In the release, the firm assures that every message exchanged over WhatsApp is protected by "sophisticated encryption that acts like a tamper-proof digital lock. This system distinguishes WhatsApp from online messaging such as Facebook Messenger, which is not end-to-end encrypted. "Messages are only stored on your phone, and no one can read them or listen to your calls, not even us.

"We remain as committed as we were when we started, to help connect the world in private and protect the personal communication of two billion users around the world," the group adds, mindful of users' concerns about privacy. In recent months, WhatsApp's reputation as a secure application has been repeatedly challenged.
At the end of January 2020, the British newspaper The Guardian revealed that Jeff Bezos, the CEO of Amazon, had his WhatsApp account hacked with a faulty video file. WhatsApp's reputation has also been tarnished by the many vulnerabilities found in the Android or iOS application. By exploiting these vulnerabilities, hackers were able to spy on users' private conversations and spread malware.

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