Instagram users could soon rely on WhatsApp to unlock features

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Facebook owns some of the most popular smartphone apps on the planet – from its own eponymous social network, Instagram, and WhatsApp. After announcing plans to bring its messaging services together into a single platform, we now have a hint about what Facebook is planning next to take advantage of its sprawling portfolio.

According to serial tipster Alessandro Paluzzi, Facebook will soon allow Instagram users to verify their identity using WhatsApp.

For those who don’t know, two-factor authentication is an extra layer of security to keep your online accounts and data safe under lock and key. This extra protection means that even if a cyber criminal has your email address and password – they still won’t be able to gain access to your account. That’s because they’ll also need to verify their identity using an extra method, including a uniquely-generated six-digit code sent via text message, or verified using an Authentication app.

Two-factor authentication is completely optional, but highly recommended. Those who rely solely on an email address and password – especially if that email-password combo has been used to protect other online accounts in the past – should really consider the extra protection.

As uncovered by Paluzzi, Instagram could soon allow people to rely on WhatsApp as a two-factor authentication method. So, rather than getting a random code sent over text message, the code will be sent to WhatsApp instead.

Thanks to WhatsApp Web, it means you’ll be able to login successfully on a laptop or desktop PC, even if you don’t have your phone in your pocket.

The feature, which is still in development by the team at Instagram, will be coming to iOS and Android. As always, until the feature is released, it’s worth taking this report with a pinch of salt. After all, Instagram trials new features all the time – but not all of these make it into the final version of the Android and iOS app.

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That said, given that WhatsApp is the most popular messaging app on the planet, it makes a lot of sense – especially given that WhatsApp and Instagram are owned by the same parent company – to tie these closer together.

The news comes as WhatsApp backtracked on threats to disable core messaging features from users’ accounts if they failed to sign-up to its new terms and conditions. Those who haven’t yet agreed to the small-print will still be able to answer phone calls, make video calls, and reply to texts – a pretty substantial change compared to what it had threatened users for months at the start of this year.

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