WhatsApp Accused of Deliberately Planting Security Backdoors

Pavel Durov, found of cross-platform instant messaging application Telegram, has accused WhatsApp of not only confusing its users about its security efficacy, but also deliberately installing backdoors into the application due to pressure from governments around the world:

WhatsApp has had a rocky past year as faith in its privacy and encryption promises continued to falter — especially after the world’s richest man fell victim to an infamous security vulnerability. Now, in a scathing blog post, Telegram Messenger’s founder, Pavel Durov, has added insult to the Facebook-owned instant messaging app’s injury by calling it “dangerous” to use.

Durov has accused WhatsApp of deflecting blame when it should have pledged to improve, and argued that simply encrypting chats end-to-end won’t shield users from breaches. “WhatsApp uses the words ‘end-to-end encryption’ as some magic incantation that alone is supposed to automatically make all communications secure. However, this technology is not a silver bullet that can guarantee you absolute privacy by itself,” Durov said.

More importantly, Durov claims that WhatsApp’s security bugs were in fact, deliberately planted backdoors to comply with and appease local law enforcement agencies so that the social network could do business without interruptions in such countries as Iran and Russia.

While Durov has a vested interest in getting people off WhatsApp and onto Telegram, that does not diminish the validity of his points.

WhatsApp is owned by Facebook. That should be enough to cause the average person to cease using the application.