WhatsApp has activated two-step verification for all of its users on iOS, Android and Windows devices – after originally launching a beta version in November.
The verification is an optional feature but, when enabled, any attempt by the user to verify a phone number must be accompanied by a six-digit passcode created by the user. On enabling the feature, the user also has the option of entering an email address – that will allow WhatsApp to send the user a link to disable the verification, in case the passcode is forgotten.
Users will not be required to reverify within seven days of last using WhatsApp without the passcode. After seven days, the user will be permitted to reverify on WhatsApp without the passcode, but will lose all pending messages in the process. If a number is reverified after 30 days of last using WhatsApp, and without the passcode, the account will be deleted and a new one created upon reverification.
To enable the verification, the user must enter the settings in the WhatsApp app, tap the ‘account’ option, then ‘two-step verification’, and finally ‘enable’. WhatsApp says it will periodically ask the user to enter the passcode.