FBI declines to comment on WhatsApp encryption

The FBI has declined to make a comment on the news Tuesday that WhatsApp is going to offer end-to-end encryption in the next version of its messaging app.

WhatsApp's decision to do so was sparked in part by the authorities in the US and Brazil trying to pressure the company to hand over confidential user conversations, and by the recent high-profile fight between the FBI and Apple over the unlocking of an iPhone.

In a response to queries we made of both the FBI and the Department of Justice, an FBI spokesperson said the federal agency has no specific comment on WhatsApp's announcement.

He did note, however, that the agency has spoken several times about "the challenges that end-to-end encryption poses for law enforcement seeking compliance with a court order". ®


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