How To Verify A Whatsapp Security Code For A Contact

Whatsapp has end-to-end encryption. Chats between users are encrypted using an encryption key that’s kept hidden. You cannot see what key is assigned to you however, users too need a way to check if their chat is encrypted . To do that, users get a security code which isn’t the same as the encryption key but is is used to make sure the chat is indeed encrypted. Here’s how you can verify a Whatsapp security code.

Verify A Whatsapp Security Code

In order to verify a whatsapp security code, you need either a photo of the security code that has been assigned to your friend has or you’ll need your friend to be physically present with their phone.

If you’re going with a photo of the code, you friend is going to need to send it to you. To send the code, open the chat thread and tap your friend’s name at the top. On the details page, tap Encryption. This will show you a QR code and a numeric code. Tap the share button, and send it to your friend.

Whatsapp won’t let you scan the code from your camera roll so the code will have to be compared manually by looking at their code and the code they sent you.

If you’re both physically in the same area, tap the Scan Code button at the bottom and then point it at the code on your friend’s screen. If the green tick appears, you both have an encrypted conversation.

We should mention that security codes do change. They don’t change without cause. Your security code changes when you uninstall and reinstall Whatsapp on your phone. The only other scenario is when you change your phone or phone number.

If the security code for a contact changes, you get an alert within the chat thread. In this case, the old security code will no longer work. If it’s saved to your camera roll, you should not use it to verify the encrypted chat. Always get a new security code after it’s been changed.

If the code doesn’t check out then it means that it’s changed or that you have the wrong one for that particular contact. That’s about it.

The code, if it leaks, cannot be used to find your encryption key. You shouldn’t advertise the security code but if it does fall in the wrong hands, you shouldn’t worry too much. No one is getting into your chat messages so you should be good.

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How To Change Your Whatsapp Security Code

Whatsapp encrypts chat messages so that no one can get backdoor access to them. It does this through an encryption key which is kept hidden. For users, this encryption key appears as a security code that they can use to verify that chats are indeed encrypted. The encryption is enabled for all users and there’s no off button. You might have noticed that sometimes you get a message in a chat thread telling you a contact’s security code has changed and wondered how you can change your own Whatsapp security code.

Change Whatsapp Security Code

Out of the box, there’s no way to change the Whatsapp security code manually. There are two cases where Whatsapp will automatically change the security code for you; when you change your phone or phone number, or when you delete and reinstall Whatsapp.

Reinstall Whatsapp

Reinstalling Whatsapp is the easy way to go about changing your Whatsapp security code however, you might lose some of your chat threads. Uninstall it like you would any other app on your phone, and then install it again from your respective app store. It’s highly recommended that you backup your chats before you uninstall Whatsapp as not all messages might be saved, and recovered when you install the app again.

Temporarily Use Another Phone

This requires you have temporary access to another phone. You’ll only need it for as long as it takes to download and set up Whatsapp.

Download Whatsapp and enter the same phone number that you use with it. Do not insert a SIM into the phone. Whatsapp verifies that the phone belongs to you by sending you a verification code. When you receive the code on your regular phone, enter it on the second, temporary device you have. That will trigger the security code to change. You can then delete the app from the second phone.

Security Code Alert

All your contacts will be alerted to the change in your security code. Likewise, you also get an alert within a chat thread when one of your contact’s security code is changed. If you want, you can disable these alerts. To disable the security code alert you get for your contacts, go to the Settings tab on Whatsapp.

Tap your account at the top. On the Account screen, tap Security. On the Security screen, turn the ‘Show Security Notifications’ switch off.

This will stop the notifications from appearing on your device however your contacts will still know when your security code is changed.

Read How To Change Your Whatsapp Security Code by Fatima Wahab on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

How To Enable Find My Device On Android

Android has a device tracking feature just like iOS does that lets you find where you device is. You can use it to track your device but you can also use it to call your device and find it in case you’ve misplaced it in the same room or house you’re in. The feature has always been baked into Android but Google has a dedicated Find My Device app to the Play Store. It gives you easy to access dashboard that you can use to view all your connected devices, and track them.

Find My Device On Android

Install Find My Device from the Google Play Store. You can get it from the link or if you later decide to search for it in the Google Play Store app, make sure you download the one that’s been published by Google.

Run the app and sign in to your Google account. You can, optionally, sign in as a guest user.

Once you’re signed in, you will need to allow the app access to your location. It will find your current device on the map, and you can call it if you want to. You can also use the Enable Secure & Erase option from the app.

The more options button i.e., the three dots at the top allow you to rename your device and switch accounts if you want to. You can also refresh the location for a device, and enable an option that requires you to always sign-in whenever the app is launched.

Installing this app isn’t necessary if you want to be able to find the device in your hands. Your phone’s location is tracked by Google and you can find it from your desktop web browser. All you have to do is Google Find my phone. You can Google Find my phone on your Android browser as well however using the app means you have far fewer taps and a better dashboard.

The Sign in as Guest option is for when you need to sign in with a Google account that you haven’t configured on your phone, or one that you don’t intend to use long-term. Whichever account you sign in with, it will be signed out the second you close the app.

This is Google’s own branded app so users are going to prefer it over other similar solutions and there are at least a hundred of them. They’re not all as reliable as Google’s own solution so the app will be a welcome addition.

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How To Use Instagram Story Questions

Stories have become a lot like the like button. At one point, every social media app had one. Now that almost every social media app has stories, they need to try and differentiate the feature on their own respective platform. Instagram is doing this by making its stories interactive. It’s added a new feature that lets you add questions to your Instagram story. It works via stickers. Here’s how you can use Instagram story questions.

Instagram Story Questions

Make sure you’re running the latest version of the Instagram app. The feature appears to have rolled out to all users so it should be available if you’ve got the latest version of the app. It’s available on both iOS and Android.

Open the Instagram app and tap the camera button at the top left. Take a photo, or select one from your camera roll. You can also record a video, or pick one from the camera roll. Once you select a photo or video, tap the sticker button i.e., the smiley face button. This will open the slider with all the stickers. There should be a Questions sticker. Tap it.

Once you add the sticker, you can type your questions. You have the usual color options available for the text color.

Anyone who views the story can choose to answer the question you ask. To view their replies, tap your story and then tap the number of views at the bottom left. The replies aren’t public however, if you tap a response you will see a ‘Share response’ option.¬†When you share a response, it takes you to the Story screen. You can add a video or picture and the question, along with the response, appears as a sticker on top. The response is shared to your story though you can probably send to to your friends too.

You can limit who can reply to your Instagram story questions. To limit the audience, go to the Story controls. Under the ‘Allow Message Replies’ section, you will see three options; Everyone, People you follow, and Off. The Off option allows you to disable replies to questions but that also makes the question feature useless unless it’s a rhetorical question you want to ask.

The feature isn’t bad. It compels people to do something other than just view a story. It’s definitely going to be great for brands but for ordinary users, it’s an easy way to interact with followers.

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How To Disable Facebook Story Archive

Facebook introduced stories in an attempt to replicate the popularity of the same feature that Snapchat has. Facebook’s user base is hardly the same as that of Snapchat so it’s no wonder that Facebook Stories aren’t as popular as they are on Snapchat. If you often post to your Facebook story, assuming the photo or video disappears after 24 hours, you might be surprised to learn that a copy of it is saved to your account. No one sees it however, it does exist. It’s not automatically deleted after the promised 24-hours. This all happens under the guise of a feature called Story Archive. If you don’t want to keep your Facebook stories forever, you should disable Facebook Story Archive.

Facebook Story Archive

Open the Facebook app and you will see stories at the top. You can cycle through the available stories but if you look at the top right of the story slider, you will see an option called ‘Your Archive’. Click it. If you’ve posted to your story recently, the Your Story Archive screen will show you your recent posts.

Tap the gear icon at the top right of this screen.

This will take you to the Story Archive Settings screen which is just one setting; the Save to Archive option. Turn it off and Facebook will no longer save a copy of your story to your account.

Facebook makes it a whole lot easier to enable this option than to disable it. Once you disable it, the screen gives you a button to enable it from the Your Story Archive screen.

If you remember, a few years ago it was discovered that even after you delete photos from Facebook, Facebook still kept a copy of them. People weren’t happy and Facebook was quick to abandon the practice. This obviously isn’t the same thing. You have the option to turn the feature off but it’s still unnecessary, and enabled by default.

The archive is only visible to you. Your friends and followers can’t see. In fact, if you wanted to make it available to them, you couldn’t. The story itself isn’t saved unless the 24-hours have expired. You can use an image or a video again or review it which is the utility of the feature. The saved stories don’t take up any space on your device. The copy is saved online so if you like the feature, you don’t have to worry about it taking up excessive space on your phone.

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