The WhatsApp app logo is seen on a smartphone in this illustration. File picture: Reuters
The WhatsApp app logo is seen on a smartphone in this illustration. File picture: Reuters

WhatsApp will now ask for your messages when you report a contact

By Yasmine Jacobs Time of article published Nov 5, 2020

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Cape Town - Popular messaging service WhatsApp is testing a new feature that will allow a user to report unwanted contacts on the app - with a difference.

Users will now be required to share recent chat messages with these accounts as proof of harassment or spam.

Currently, users are able to report both regular and business WhatsApp accounts if they are spammed or harassed. The difference now however is that WhatsApp will request evidence before it acts against the reported account.

It is worth noting that WhatsApp never receives your messages without your permission. If you decide to report a contact, you essentially agree to forward a copy to WhatsApp of the recent messages from that chat.

So if you choose to report an account, a message will say ‘Most recent messages from this user will be forwarded to WhatsApp.’

According to a report by Wabetainfo, the messaging service company will only take action against the account after properly verifying it.

“When you report a contact to WhatsApp, WhatsApp elaborates your report considering several factors, like the number of reports received for that phone number from different users, if the account of the reported user is new and it has already received some reports, etc,” said WABetaInfo in the report.

“With this update, WhatsApp is introducing a new way to verify if a report is reliable: receiving a copy of recent messages from that chat.”

Currently if you receive a message from an unknown contact, WhatsApp asks you to report, block or add the person to contacts list. In the new update, WhatsApp will now ask you to submit a copy of recent messages from the chat to verify if a report is correct or not. This will help the company take action accordingly.

For groups, you get the option of exiting it and deleting all the messages. If you are reporting a particular individual, then you will be given an option to block the person and delete the chat.

The feature is live on the Android version of the app and it will be following soon for iOS beta testers in the next few weeks.


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