FACEBOOK-OWNED WhatsApp is reportedly plotting a self-destructing messages feature in a bid to further soup-up its privacy credentials.
So says a report at WABetaInfo, which reports that the company is planning to follow in the footsteps of Gmail, Facebook Messenger and Gmail with a disappearing message feature, which first popped-up in WhatsApp's Android app's test version 2.19.275.
📝 WhatsApp beta for Android 2.19.275: what's new?— WABetaInfo (@WABetaInfo) October 1, 2019
WhatsApp is working on new features. In this version there are hidden tracks about Disappearing Messages! ⏱ https://t.co/gZVACz3CMA
NOTE: The feature is under development and it will be visible in future.
The feature will, unsurprisingly, make sensitive messages disappear after a set period of time; a timer currently gives users the option between five seconds and an hour, though that might change based on user feedback.
Oddly, disappearing messages are currently only available in group chats and not individual messages; as per reports, everyone in the group has to agree that all messages in the chat will be deleted after the specified time.
Still, the feature will likely change as it's unlikely to show up in WhatsApp any time soon though. WABetaInfo notes that the feature is still in the "alpha stage" of development, which means that the company is just starting to work on it.
While WhatsApp is looking to add yet more privacy-conscious features to its app, recent reports suggest the UK and US governments are planning to sign a treaty that will require Facebook - and presumably Facebook-owned WhatsApp - to hand over encrypted messages to UK law enforcement for serious cases
Facebook, for its part, is currently holding strong in its defence of encryption. "We believe in the right for people to have a private conversation online," the company said in a statement. µ
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