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WhatsApp will now warn you against suspicious links

WhatsApp will now warn you against suspicious links”

Mired by fake news circulation in India, Facebook-owned instant messenger service WhatsApp is looking tap national newspapers and local dailies to create awareness amongst citizens.

In response, WhatsApp had informed the government that fake news, misinformation and hoaxes can be checked by the government, civil society and technology companies "working together".

"We have been testing a new label in India that highlights when a message has been forwarded versus composed by the sender". Double check the facts when you're not sure who wrote the original message. The ad campaign sees full-page ads in a number of newspapers today, mentioning steps to check when a piece of news may be fake.

Last week, we had reported that Whatsapp is offering upto $50,000 grant to social scientists inorder to discover ways to stop the madness of fake news. The ads will run in both English and Hindi and appear in national and regional newspapers around the country. "If you read something that makes you angry or afraid, ask whether it was shared to make you feel that way".

Asking users to be thoughtful of what they share, WhatsApp said, "if you read something that makes you angry or afraid, ask whether it was shared to make you feel that way".

To recall, a series of lynching incidents around India triggered by fake or doctored WhatsApp forwards prompted the Indian government to instruct WhatsApp to look into the matter with due diligence. The feature can help users to detect whether a sent or received link is trustworthy.

Last week, five people were lynched in Dhule district in Maharashtra state on suspicion of them being part of of a gang of child-lifters.

WhatsApp has previously said it is tweaking features and giving users controls in its effort to rein in false messages. In a statement, Whatsapp said in part that it is "horrified by these awful acts of violence".

Users on WhatsApp should always do their own research into whether a piece of information being forwarded is genuine, before sending it along.



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