WhatsApp launches a feature that labels forwarded messages

Whatsapp to introduce new tool to address fake news

Whatsapp to introduce new tool to address fake news

The government's warning to WhatsApp comes in the wake of a spate of incidents involving lynching of innocent people because of certain "fake and motivated" messages being circulated on the widely used messaging app.

Also on Tuesday, WhatsApp launched an education campaign in India that's aimed at helping users spot fake news on the platform. The Facebook-owned firm coming under fire for its handling of hoax messages that have been cited as the reason for several people being killed by mobs in India. IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad asked WhatsApp to take measures to control the spread of fake news via its platform.

Do you think this step taken by WhatsApp will help in solving the problems of lynching across the country?

"Like the government of India, we're horrified by these awful acts of violence and wanted to respond quickly to the very important issues you have raised".

Notably, WhatsApp will analyze all the links sent via messages locally which means the messages containing links will not be sent to the WhatsApp servers. "It also helps you determine if your friend or relative wrote the message they sent or if it originally came from someone else", the messaging service said in a post.

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IT Ministry has already informed Whatsapp that it is not a rocket science to stop spread of fake news and some technological solution is feasible, if they want it. "We will build on these efforts", outlines the news advertisement.

WhatsApp has started rolling out a feature that will indicate to users which messages they receive were forwarded by as is the sender. Group admins will also be able to restrict a user from sending a particular message. In the latest occurrence, five people were lynched by a mob in Maharashtra on the suspicion of being child kidnappers.

WhatsApp has said it can block spam but cannot read the content of messages for privacy reasons, including potentially problematic content spreading in user chats.

Owned by Facebook, WhatsApp's biggest market is India, with about 200 million users in the country.

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