WhatsApp has introduced a new feature that lets users log into their WhatsApp account using their fingerprint or Face ID while linking to WhatsApp Web or Desktop. While logging into their WhatsApp accounts, users will be asked to authenticate using either biometric methods. The added biometrics will be stored locally and WhatsApp can’t access the biometric information stored by your device's operating system.
The purpose of introducing biometric authentication to WhatsApp Web and Desktop is to avoid any unethical use of WhatsApp on the Web or Desktop app.
In order to link WhatsApp Web or Desktop to your WhatsApp account, you will now be asked to use your face or fingerprint unlock on your phone, before scanning a QR code from the phone to link your device. The additional layer of security will limit the chance that a housemate or officemate can link devices to your WhatsApp account without you. It builds on WhatsApp’s existing security measures, which pops up a notification on your phone whenever a Web/Desktop login occurs, and the ability to unlink devices from your phone at any time.
The new security update for linking devices will be rolling out, alongside a visual redesign to the WhatsApp Web page on phones, to users with compatible devices over the coming weeks.WhatsApp further added that face and fingerprint authentication would take place on your device in a privacy-preserving manner - by design. WhatsApp cannot access the biometric information stored by your device's operating system.