WhatsApp vulnerability could be used to spread fake news and scam users
09 August, 2018, 17:29 | Author: Rafael Roberts
In response to these notices, WhatsApp had outlined initiatives it is taking to curbfake news circulation, including education and advocacy efforts.
For WhatsApp, India is its largest user base with people forwarding more content than in any other country.On July 1, TOI reported that a single WhatsApp rumour on child lifters resulted in the lynching of 22 people in 10 different states.
In simple words, this means that the Indian users won't be able to forward any message to more than 5 contacts at one go.
WhatsApp confirmed that it has begun rolling out its forward message limit in India, which is its biggest market at 200 million users, according to news agency IANS.
WhatsApp told the Times that it works to remove people using hacked versions of its service, but said the ability to manipulate quotes wasn't a flaw.
Apart from the forward message limit, WhatsApp also launched educational videos in India asking users to "double check" facts before sharing messages received as forwards. A new WhatsApp update will likely come with the option to restrict forwards.
Globally, the company allows users to forward messages for up to 20 chats (either individuals or groups).
WhatsApp hopes to keep the platform a private messaging app by limiting the number of forwards, and also stop quick spread of misinformation.
Media reports surfaced this week, claiming the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) had asked telecom companies for ways to block social media platforms like WhatsApp, Facebook, Telegram and Instagram in case of a threat to national security and public order.
Check Point's Oded Vanunu said the company had notified Whatsapp of the issues, but the latter had responded that it could not immediately fix the matter due to the way the app is constructed.
The app's end-to-end encryption doesn't help in this instance, and Woog also said that verification of every single message would be too hard a task and possibly create further security implications.
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