Part of a WhatsApp group? These privacy-focused features are a must for you

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WhatsApp groups are virtual platforms for families, workplaces, communities, schools, and more. Groups are growing in size and scale. Now, we also have WhatsApp communities that expand significantly. WhatsApp groups are still a popular choice of communication, but they can also become a point of contention for users concerned about privacy. To minimize the impact on privacy, WhatsApp has some features that let you get the most out of the platform without compromising on security and privacy.

Check out the best security features you can use in WhatsApp groups:

Block and Report: WhatsApp provides users with the option to block accounts and report encounters directly to WhatsApp Problematic messages in individual or group chats. The instant messaging application offers people the option of keeping reported messages on their phones in case they want to share them with fact-checkers or law enforcement officials.

Forward Limits: You may have heard that WhatsApp lets you forward highly forwarded messages to as many as five personal accounts. However, there is a different limit for WhatsApp groups. Messages that have a “Forwarded Label” can be forwarded to only one group at a time instead of five. WhatsApp claims that limiting forwarded messages has resulted in a 70 percent reduction in forwarded content. The app stresses on the fact that users should refrain from forwarding a message if they are unsure of the origin or data.

Read more: WhatsApp Web to Get New Password Protection Feature; Here’s How It’ll Work

Group Privacy Settings: Only people with your phone number on WhatsApp can add you to groups. WhatsApp’s group privacy settings and group invite system allow users to decide who can add them to groups. There is a dedicated setting that will not allow anyone to add you to a group without your permission. Essentially, there are three options for each user:

‘Everyone can add you to a group’
‘your contacts’
‘Who you choose from your contacts.’

Quietly leave the group: When you choose to quietly exit a group, it will notify only group admins, not everyone in the chat thread. The feature is intended to help users feel more comfortable leaving groups they no longer wish to be in.

Admin Control: By default, any group participant can send messages and change group information, including the group subject, icon, or description. However, WhatsApp settings enable administrators to decide who can send messages within groups.

Fact Checking on WhatsApp: In India, WhatsApp has 10 independent fact-checking organizations that identify, review and verify information on users and help prevent the spread of misinformation on its platform. Additionally, WhatsApp enables its users to verify information by texting the Poynter Institute’s IFCN WhatsApp chatbot to validate a message or information. Users can use these methods to ensure that they are not spreading any misinformation.

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