Thursday, September 29, 2022

WhatsApp’s new features cater to privacy protection

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On Tuesday, WhatsApp announced three new privacy features. The three new features will allow users to leave groups silently, opt who can and cannot see them online, and block screenshots of view-once messages. They will also be able to leave groups without announcing it to the entire channel.

WhatsApp is owned Facebook (FB) parent company Meta. It has over 2 billion users worldwide. CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced the changes on Facebook and Instagram, saying the company would “”keep building new ways to protect your messages and keep them as private and secure as face-to-face conversations.”

WhatsApp has long emphasized the use of end-to-end encryption, which means that only the sender and recipient of a message can see the contents of the message. And, like other private messaging platforms, it already allows users to send messages that are deleted after a certain amount of time.

Last year, however, WhatsApp was heavily scrutinized following an update to its terms of service.

Many users were concerned at the time about a section of WhatsApp’s privacy policy that detailed what data is shared with parent company Facebook, which has a troubled track record when it comes to protecting user data.

The third policy, screenshot blocking tool, will be available on messages intended for view once, is still getting tested and will be made available later, according to WhatsApp.

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