CEM REPORT | WhatsApp has announced a rollout of new privacy features which the meta company says will make the app safer and easier for users.
The new privacy features will include, exit group chats without notifying everyone; choose who can see when you’re online for the number of contacts you want; and preventing screenshots from pictures and videos when it is put on view once.
Meta CEO and Founder, Mark Zuckerberg, announcing via his Facebook page said, the feature will start rolling out to all users this month.
“Today, we’re excited to bring several new privacy features that provide even more layers of protection and give you more control over your messages. This is all part of how we work to keep your conversations secure on WhatsApp,”
He added that the new features will translate to more privacy, more protection and more control by users.
“We believe messaging and calling should always be as private and secure as having face-to-face conversations. Kind of as if two people were talking and no one else was around.
“WhatsApp protects the personal calls and messages of users with default end-to-end encryption, so no one but the intended recipient can hear or see them. But that is just one important part of protecting your privacy.”
A Breakdown of the New Features:
The ‘choose who can see when you’re online’ provides users with the option to select who can and can’t see their online visibility.
“Seeing when friends or family are online, helps us feel connected to one another, but we’ve all had times when we wanted to check our WhatsApp privately. For the moments you want to keep your online presence private, we’re introducing the ability to select who can and can’t see when you’re online. This will start rolling out to all users this month.”
‘Leave Groups Silently’ feature WhatsApp says will empower users to exit a group without the notice of members except the admin.
“We love our group chats but some are not forever. We’re making it possible to exit a group privately without making it a big deal to everyone. Now, instead of notifying the full group when you are leaving, only the admins will be notified. This feature will start to roll out to all users this month.”
The view once feature is already on the app but an update to the feature will prevent screenshots of data shared with the feature.
“View Once is already an incredibly popular way to share photos or media that don’t need to have a permanent digital record. Now we’re enabling screenshot blocking for View Once messages for an added layer of protection. We’re testing this feature now and are excited to roll it out to users soon.”
Furthermore, the social media company says it will host a campaign to educate people about the new features.
“To spread the word about these new layers of protection, we’re also kicking off a campaign to educate people about the new features and our continued commitment to protecting your private conversations on WhatsApp. We hope people enjoy getting to use these new features and benefit from several options that help you keep your messages secure. We look forward to your feedback on what to build next.”
The company added that the introduction of these new features is backed by a new WhatsApp privacy study which found that 72% of people value being able to speak in an honest, unfiltered way, but more than 47% are only comfortable doing this in a safe, private space.
The green app as it is also called is one of the most used social media for both personal and business purposes with approximately two billion downloads.