WhatsApp for Android equals the iOS version by adding fingerprint protection. This means that once activated, WhatsApp does not display the chat list and is unusable unless you use the fingerprint to unlock it.
While in WhatsApp for iOS, the application is compatible with both the fingerprint (Touch ID) and facial recognition (Face ID), Android is limited to fingerprint biometrics. The only requirement is to have the version WhatsApp beta for Android and have the fingerprint configured as security for the mobile.
Chats just for your eyes
While the mobile lock screen should keep most intruders who want to take a look at your chats at bay, there are times when you can lend the mobile momentarily to someone for something or the mobile can be unlocked for being in a safe location. In this case, nothing prevents someone close to pick up the phone, open WhatsApp and start reading.
With protection enabled, WhatsApp does not open until you use your fingerprint
Rather, nothing prevented it. What until now depended exclusively on third-party applications or that the customization layer had app blocking is now a WhatsApp native configuration: fingerprint lock.
It is deactivated at the factory, so you need to enter the settings, in the privacy section and enter Fingerprint lock, then activating the option Unlock with fingerprint. Note: the function is being activated now, so it may not appear even though you are using the WhatsApp beta.
After activating it, two additional options appear with which you can configure if you want the lock to be immediate, that is, as soon as you leave WhatsApp you need to use the fingerprint to re-enter. If you want to relax security a bit, you have the option of adding a grace period of 1 minute or 30 minutes.
The second option allows you hide the content of the messages you receive when WhatsApp is blocked. If you deactivate the option, the notifications only say that you have "1 new message", without saying who it is or its content.
The protection itself is quite effective, and jump as soon as you open WhatsApp, either directly or from other applications. There is only one exception: calls. If your WhatsApp is locked at that time and someone calls you, you can answer them as usual, without using your fingerprint.
Share WhatsApp for Android now allows you to protect your chats with your fingerprint