WhatsApp fights back against fake news

WhatsApp fights back against fake news

Tuesday, 12 February, 2019

In an effort to counter the spread of so-called fake news, WhatsApp has introduced a Message Forwarding Limit function, which only allows you to forward a message to a maximum of five people. The current limit does not affect groups, which can have up to 256 members.

Before the introduction, users could forward a single message to more than 250 people. After a number of incidents of violence, particularly those in India which were triggered by fake news sent through the app, WhatsApp limited the number to 20 people who you can forward to.

The five-person limit has been tested among India’s 200 million WhatsApp users since last July, where a number of mob lynching’s took place that resulted in the deaths of 30 people.

WhatsApp has been regularly hit with controversial headlines as it found itself being increasingly abused to spread manipulated photos and videos, fake news and many other forms of misinformation.

Recently Facebook, the parent company of WhatsApp, announced it had removed 500 pages and accounts that were allegedly involved in spreading fake news in Central Europe, Ukraine as well as other Eastern European states.

And this month WhatsApp said that they were deleting two million accounts per month as part of its campaign against the spread of false information and fake news. The social media giant said that at least 95% of those deleted each month were as a result of ‘abnormal behaviour’ detected by the company rather than reported by users.

Likewise, Facebook announced it had removed 1.5 billion accounts in the last six months of 2018 as part of its campaign against misinformation and spam.

TG Bamford author picture

By:

A veteran freelance journalist writing extensively on internet news and cybersecurity.

News What's the story?

Keep up with the latest developments in UK broadband.

Virgin gigabit trials begin in Southampton

Nationwide gigabit takes a big step forwards with Virgin's new network upgrade.

Virgin gigabit trials begin in Southampton Read more

Tesco customers get triple value with NOW TV

Get the most out of your Clubcard points with streaming discounts.

Read more

CityFibre bring full-fibre to 70,000 homes

Only 4.9 million to go...

Read more

Netflix scoop Game of Thrones creators

Benioff and Weiss sign to the streaming giant for 9 figure paychecks.

Read more

Help Learn with us

Make the most of the internet with our broadband library.

How to optimise WiFi connections in old buildings

How to optimise WiFi connections in old buildings Read more

How to choose a broadband provider you’ll be happy with

Read more

How fast home broadband helps to build your career

Don't let a sluggish connection hold you back.

Read more
Back To Top