On Tuesday, August 9, 2022, WhatsApp announced the impending release of three privacy features as new layers of protection for users, giving them more control over who sees or saves what in their day-to-day use of the instant messaging app.
Three New WhatsApp Features
Over the years, WhatsApp has frequently introduced privacy features to provide more impactful layers of protection for users, thereby giving them control over their messages shared on the platform and helping keep conversations secure.
The soon-to-be-rolled-out features will allow users a chance to leave groups silently, select who can or can’t see them when they’re online, and block screenshots of View Once messages.
These features are added to the interlocking layers of protection like end-to-end encryption calls and messages, disappearing messages, end-to-end encrypted backups, two-step verification, and the block and report options.
Speaking about the new features in a Facebook post, Mark Zuckerberg, the Co-founder and CEO of Meta Platforms, the parent company of WhatsApp, said that the company will “keep building new ways to protect your messages and keep them as private and secure as face-to-face conversations.”
What WhatsApp’s Three New Features Mean to You
The new features are welcome as they give you more control and might just help your peace of mind.
The ability to leave groups silently means that you don’t make the usual unnecessary announcement of your exit, which might lead to unwanted questions like “why did you leave?” or kick off unnecessary conversations in the group. This feature notifies only the admins, making it a private affair. The rollout of this feature starts this month.
By choosing who can see you online, you stay in control of who gets access to you. There are times you just want to check some things on the platform and not necessarily send or respond to a ‘hi’. This feature will help you keep your online presence private. The rollout of this feature starts this month.
There are some things you just want to show people for a short period of time, and the ‘View Once‘ feature of WhatsApp allows you to share photos or other media that disappear from the chat after they’ve been opened by the recipient.
The new ‘View Once’ screenshot blocking provides an additional protective layer for these messages so that the viewers can’t save them. This new protective feature is still in the testing phase and will be rolled out to users soon.
WhatsApp also shares, “Privacy is our DNA, and we’ll never stop building new ways to protect your personal conversations… we are also kicking off a campaign to educate people about the new features and our continued commitment to protecting your private conversations on WhatsApp.”