After flagging forwarded messages and limiting message forwarding to five chats, WhatsApp is about to release a new feature as part of its initiatives to check the spread of fake news in India. The instant messaging application is testing a feature which labels dubious links shared on its platform.
As of now, the 'suspicious link' tag can be found on WhatsApp beta for Android devices. The feature will be brought to iOS and Windows Phone in later updates, according to a report by WABetaInfo.
The suspicious link detection feature kicks in when a message with a dubious link is received. According to reports, the feature tags a link suspicious on finding anomalies in it, like an unusual character. If the link is opened despite the initial warning, a new window pops up informing the user why the link has been flagged as suspicious.
Also, the suspicious link detection feature checks a link locally on the receiver's device, without accessing any data from the WhatsApp or Facebook servers. This measure has been put in place due to WhatsApp's end-to-end encryption on messages.
How to activate Suspicious Link Detection
The suspicious link detection feature is currently available only on WhatsApp beta for Android. To activate it, users will have to update their WhatsApp beta app to version 2.18.221 or later. If the feature does not show up even after updating to the aforesaid version, then backup the chat history and reinstall WhatsApp once again. Reinstalling WhatsApp again downloads the most recent update from Play Store, enabling the feature.
The feature appearing in beta version indicates towards a rollout on the normal version soon. The Facebook-owned instant messaging application has promised to bring the suspicious link detection feature to iOS and Windows Phone soon.
(Edited by Vivek Punj)