WhatsApp on iOS does not delete chats fully

Earlier his year in April, WhatsApp announced that it had turned on full end-to-end encryption for its communications. However a security researcher Jonathan Zdziarski wrote in a blog post that the latest version of WhatsApp for Apple’s iOS software for iPhones leaves some information vulnerable. The researcher, Jonathan Zdziarski, found traces of deleted chats, which can be pieced together into conversations, he said, and that’s even if you’ve cleared or archived them.

“To test, I installed the app and started a few different threads. I then archived some, cleared, some, and deleted some threads. I made a second backup after running the “Clear All Chats” function in WhatsApp. None of these deletion or archival options made any difference in how deleted records were preserved. In all cases, the deleted SQLite records remained intact in the database.Just to be clear, WhatsApp is deleting the record (they don’t appear to be trying to intentionally preserve data), however the record itself is not being purged or erased from the database, leaving a forensic artifact that can be recovered and reconstructed back into its original form. “Zdziarski wrote in his blog post

One of ways Jonathan suggests an iPhone user can mitigate this issue is by using iTunes to set a long, complex backup password for your phone which you should not store in the keychain.

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