With the rise of online applications like Facebook, Twitter etc., social media has been the medium to spread viral messages. The 2 billion user WhatsApp is no exception to this.
Starting today, WhatsApp, owned by Facebook, is now piloting a new feature called “Search the Web” to let users fact-check the viral messages by simply tapping an icon. This new fact-check feature in WhatsApp will present a magnifying glass icon for all messages that have been forwarded more than 5 times. Tapping on the magnifying glass icon, users will be taken to Google search and there is a high chance that hoax messages appear on the top search engine results.
The fact-check feature in WhatsApp is rolling out in Brazil, Italy, Ireland, Mexico, Spain, UK, and US for all those who are using the latest version of the application on iOS and Android.
As the messages are end-to-end encrypted, WhatsApp doesn’t have a way to flag them as hoaxed. So, the company is coming up with this fact-check feature in WhatsApp to counter the hoaxes which are mindlessly forwarded by people without any fact-digging.
Whatsapp has not clearly mentioned on how the encrypted messages will be sent to browser.
Earlier, Whatsapp had set limits on forwarding messages which reduced the count of forwarded messages by 70%.