How To Recover Deleted Whatsapp Messages On iPhone

Recover deleted WhatsApp text messages, even if they have been deleted from your iPhone

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Main methods to recovering deleted WhatsApp messages

WhatsApp is one of the most popular ways for us all to communicate with friends and family using our mobile phones. It’s an easy-to-use messaging service that allows users to create ‘chats’ with specific groups of people or on specific topics. Most WhatsApp users find themselves tapping out messages on a daily basis, building up enormous amounts of message data which is usually retrievable and searchable through your iPhone. However, If this data gets deleted by accident, as a WhatsApp user you’re likely to be desperate to recover the lost messages as soon as possible.

Most of us use WhatsApp to chat with friends and family but we also use it as a tool to organise social events, discuss times, dates and addresses and share photos and videos. This is the useful data that many of us refer to through our WhatsApp app regularly, and without this data we would be lost.

Why is backing up to iTunes important?

Newer versions of WhatsApp do not allow third party data recovery software to retrieve data from your iPhone directly

If you have an older version of WhatsApp, you will still be able to recover lost WhatsApp messages directly from your iPhone. However, since WhatsApp version 2.16.3 was released in 2016, WhatsApp has started to encrypt messages. This has made WhatsApp recovery from iPhones impossible through third-party recovery software for every iOS device running WhatsApp v2.16.3 and above. To check which WhatsApp version is installed on your iOS device, open WhatsApp and then navigate to Settings > Help – your WhatsApp version will appear at the top.

If you are using an older version of WhatsApp you can still retrieve WhatsApp messages you lost directly from your phone without a backup using Enigma Recovery data recovery software. Our software will allow you to transfer your existing WhatsApp messages from your iPhone to your PC or Mac by following a simple process.

What if you are running WhatsApp v. 2.16.3 or above?

If the version of WhatsApp on your iPhone is v. 2.16.3 or above, backing up to iTunes is important if you want to be able to recover lost or deleted WhatsApp messages with or without third party data recovery software. If you have a backup, there are a few options to consider when recovering deleted WhatsApp messages on iPhone, but using Enigma Recovery software is the best option as it allows you to target specific lost messages without having to resort to a complete iPhone reset.

What are your options for recovering deleted WhatsApp messages on iPhone?

So, what do you do if you’ve accidentally deleted some of your WhatsApp data files from your iPhone? First of all, don’t worry. You should be able to recover deleted WhatsApp messages on iPhone using one of the below options.

What devices is Enigma Recovery compatible with?

Recover deleted WhatsApp messages from iPhone directly

This is the approach that is recommended if you are running a pre-version 2.16.3 of WhatsApp. It will enable you to recover deleted WhatsApp messages directly from your iPhone using our data recovery software.

  1. Download Enigma Recovery

    Download the software to your Mac or Windows computer. You will need the full, unlocked version of Enigma Recovery.

    Step 1: Download Enigma Recovery to begin to retrieve whatsapp messages On iphone
  2. Connect your iPhone

    To allow the software to transfer iPhone data files to your computer, connect your phone to the computer via a USB cable. You may need to enable the connection on your iPhone by tapping ‘Trust’ on the popup notification on your device and the computer.

    Step 2: Trust your iPhone with the computer to start the process of finding deleted whatsapp messages
  3. Scan iPhone for WhatsApp

    From the dataset menu, select ‘WhatsApp’ to indicate you would like to copy WhatsApp messages to your computer. Now click ‘Start scan’.

    Step 3: select whatsapp and scan your iphone for deleted whatsapp messages
  4. View WhatsApp messages

    The software will now scan your phone for existing WhatsApp messages. After the scan, you can view your data files within the WhatsApp tab.

    Step 4: view your recovered whatsapp messages
  5. Save WhatsApp messages

    You can view all your data files and save them to your computer. Save your messages through the ‘Export & Restore’ function > ‘Export to desktop’ > Select location through ‘Browse’ > ‘Export’.

    Save and export your deleted whatsapp messages

Recover deleted WhatsApp Messages from iTunes backup without overwrite

If you were not using the Chat Backup feature in WhatsApp, you can scan an iPhone backup created through iTunes (or Finder if you are using Mac OS X 10.15 or later) to find your deleted WhatsApp messages. Syncing your iPhone with iTunes or Finder when it is connected to your Mac or Windows computer will automatically include WhatsApp messages in an iPhone backup file.

You can carry out a full device restore using this backup file, however, this will overwrite any data files that have been added to your device since the iTunes backup was completed. To ensure that you can extract your WhatsApp messages and attachments, including photos and videos, without additional data loss, follow this method, using Enigma Recovery:

  1. Download Enigma Recovery

    Download the Enigma Recovery free trial. The application is compatible with both Windows and Mac computers.

    Download Enigma Recovery to start the process of recovering whatsapp messages from itunes
  2. Select ‘Recover from my iTunes’

    Once the application has been installed and opened to the start screen, select ‘Recover from my iTunes’ from the side panel menu.

    Select recover from my itunes
  3. Choose iPhone backup file

    The software will display all the Finder or iTunes backup files found on your computer. Select the one you would like to retrieve WhatsApp messages from and click ‘Continue’.

    Choose the itunes backup file to start retrieving deleted whatsapp messages
  4. Scan for WhatsApp messages

    Now select the data type(s) you would like to extract from your Finder or iTunes backup file. As we are aiming to recover deleted WhatsApp conversations, select ‘WhatsApp’ only. This will recover your chat threads and attachments. After you have done this, start the scan.

    Select whatsapp messages from the datatype and it will scan your itunes backup
  5. View WhatsApp messages

    The scan time will depend on how many data types you have selected to scan, and how much data is saved within your iTunes backup file. After the scan, you can view your WhatsApp messages in the WhatsApp tab. To view WhatsApp attachments, click on the ‘Photos’ and ‘Videos’ tabs in the software, depending on the attachment you are trying to recover.

    View the recovered whatsapp messages from your itunes backup
  6. Save WhatsApp messages

    Unlock the full version of Enigma Recovery to view all your data and save it to your computer. Save your messages through the ‘Export & Restore’ function > ‘Export to desktop’ > Select location through ‘Browse’ > ‘Export’ .

    Save & export deleted whatsapp messages back to your computer

Recover deleted WhatsApp messages from iTunes backup

This method allows you to recover deleted WhatsApp messages from your iTunes backup without the use of third party data recovery software. However, it will involve an entire device restore and overwrite, which could lead to further data loss if your iTunes backups are not up to date, for example.

  1. Connect your iPhone to your computer

    Using your USB cable, connect your iPhone to your computer or laptop.

    Connect your device via your USB cable
  2. Launch iTunes

    Once your phone is connected, iTunes should open automatically. If it does not, launch the program. You may need to ‘Trust’ the computer with your device.

    Connect and trust your phone with iTunes
  3. Navigate to device screen

    Click on the iPhone icon in the top left of the screen – the Device screen with all of your device information will be displayed.

    Navigate to the device screen
  4. Select ‘Restore Backup’

    Under ‘Backups’ > ‘Manually Backup and Restore’, click ‘Restore Backup’. If you are using Finder, this option is in the ‘General’ tab. You should see a list of backups available. Choose the most recent or relevant backup to restore your iPhone, depending on which file includes the WhatsApp messages that you need to recover.

    Select and restore a backup via iTunes
  5. Restore backup

    Keep your device connected whilst iTunes restores your device to the selected backup. All of the iPhone data from your previous backup will be transferred to your iPhone, replacing the current data.

    Keep your device connected whilst iTunes restores your device to the selected backup


Can I use Enigma Recovery free trial software to recover my deleted WhatsApp message files?

Yes you can. We recommend using our free trial software to scan your iPhone or iTunes backup file. It will show you a selection of the WhatsApp messages that our software has retrieved. This enables you to check that the messages you particularly want to recover, such as those with sentimental value or ones featuring important information, are available to recover before paying for the full version of the software in order to recover the data.

Can I lose more data when using Enigma Recovery software?

No, your iPhone data is safe throughout the scanning process when using our data recovery software. We have developed our software to create a backup of your device and use this backup during the scan, so the data on your device remains secure.

Which devices is Enigma Recovery compatible with?

Our software is compatible with the newest iOS mobile models, including iPhone SE, iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max. We are even compatible with iOS 13.


Matthew has 9 years experience marketing software products across Europe to customers and businesses. As Chief Marketing Officer he concentrates on how we can meet users' needs; identifying new features and products and communicating how we can help you protect your data.