WhatsApp appears to be testing a new feature that lets users block spam messages. According to a report by WABetaInfo, WhatsApp will be able to identify spam messages that have been shared multiple times. The feature was spotted in the beta version of the app with the number 2.17.430. The report said WhatsApp is likely to roll out this new feature in the next update for Android and iOS.
At the moment, WhatsApp does block spam messages which have been forwarded over 25 times. Moving forward, the new feature will alert if a message has been forwarded more than 25 times through a label that reads “forwarded many times”. And if a user needs to send a message to multiple contacts, WhatsApp recommends to use the Broadcast List feature, where only contacts that have your phone number in their address book will receive your message.
Given the rise in the user base, there has been a lot of talk over the past few years over the increase in circulation of “spam” and “hoax” messages on the platform.
WhatsApp seems to be aware about the issue and has published tips for spotting spam and hoax messages. “If you’ve received spam from a contact, delete the message and do not click on any links or provide personal information. Tell the contact that the message they sent includes spam and point them to this WhatsApp safety page.You can also send reports of spam to WhatsApp by contacting us from inside the app,” the company says.
By introducing the new feature, WhatsApp is continuing its quest to crack down on spam and hoax messaging being circulated on its messaging platform. It also gives a larger message among its users that WhatsApp is serious about tackling fraudsters from sending out fake emails, photos and videos in order to steal highly sensitive banking and personal information.