WhatsApp on Thursday announced the launch of Fingerprint Lock for Android. With the move, the Facebook-owned company is finally bringing biometric authentication to the Android app, with iPhone users enjoying both Touch ID (fingerprint recognition) and Face ID (facial recognition) since February this year. With the feature, Android users can now have the app lock automatically, and unlock only with their fingerprint. The move comes at a time WhatsApp is making headlines thanks to a recent hack, and its fallout including a lawsuit against spyware-maker NSO Group alleged to have made the hack possible.
WhatsApp Fingerprint Lock for Android
Just like the Touch ID feature enabled for iPhone users, WhatsApp for Android users can now choose to lock the app – with their fingerprints as authentication to unlock it thereafter. Users can also choose how much time the app will automatically lock in, from immediately after closing, to after 1 minute, and after 30 minutes. Users will also be able to choose whether the content of their messages will be visible in notifications, including the sender of the message.
Enable Fingerprint Lock on WhatsApp on Android
You can enable the fingerprint lock on WhatsApp by visiting the privacy settings of the app. I have tested this feature on multiple Android devices and it works flawlessly. Here is the step-by-step guide you can follow to secure your chats on WhatsApp.
1. Tap on the three-dot menu on the top right of WhatsApp and then tap on Settings.
2. Here, tap on Accounts and then on Privacy.
3. Scroll down to find the “Fingerprint lock” option and tap on it. Now, tap on the toggle to turn it on.
4. In the next step, WhatsApp will ask you to confirm your fingerprint so touch on the fingerprint sensor of your device to confirm it. Once confirmed, you will see that there is an option to set the “Automatically Lock” time. You can choose between immediately, 1 minute, and 30 minutes.
Finally, there’s a toggle to enable/disable message previews. It is turned on by default which means you will be able to see messages in notifications. If you want to turn off message preview, turn off this toggle.
5. Once you have enabled the fingerprint lock, this is how your WhatsApp will open if anyone wants to access it without your permission.
While we have been able to lock WhatsApp and any other app for that matter using various third-party apps on Android, it’s great to have a native option as it’s more secure and streamlined.
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