02 February 2018
Spam is a major concern in today’s digital world. Whether it be on a website, email or even an app, it’s downright annoying! Sadly, WhatsApp is affected by it too. Have you ever received a message which read like this?
WhatsApp is going to cost us money soon. The only way that it will stay free is if you are a frequent user i.e. you have at least 10 people you are chatting with. To become a frequent user send this message to 10 people who receive it (2 ticks) and your WhatsApp logo should turn Red to indicate a frequent user.
Most users have! Well, it wasn’t too long ago that scammers were hitting up WhatsApp with fake subscription messages. This isn’t the only way one is affected though. Recently, it was detected and made known that a loophole in WhatsApp actually allowed one with enough server access to silently add a member to a group chat and spy on the conversation without anyone knowing. WhatsApp is aware of the increase in number of spam messages and is looking for new countermeasures to address the problem.
In order to fight spammers, WhatsApp is introducing a new feature. Since spammers never send a message to just one contact, WhatsApp will use the ‘Forward’ option to curb the number of messages spammers send. After a message is identified as repeatedly forwarded, the users will be greeted with a message mentioning that the message has been forwarded too many times. The limit for a single forwarded message is around 30 times and this alert will pop up around the 25th time.
WhatsApp recommends using the Broadcast List for sending messages to many contacts. However, spammers avoid this route as users will not receive their messages since they do not have their numbers saved in the Contacts lists.
To understand if a message has been forwarded too many times, you will see a label on the bubble. As of now, this feature is still in development and will likely be so for a short while. Its exact functionality is still unknown. It’s really good to see WhatsApp trying to implement new measures to keep scammers out.