WhatsApp rejects Indian Government demand to trace users
WhatsApp has denied the request of Indian Government to come up with a technology solution to trace the source of viral fake messages.
WhatsApp and Indian Government are not in the best of terms since the past few months. An array of mob-lynching incidents have killed almost two dozen innocent people as a result of fake news being spread widely on the social messaging application WhatsApp. In order to curb these incidents and spread of fake news. Indian Government had demanded WhatsApp to have an official presence in India, revisit the messaging application interface to put a check on forwarded messages and come up with a solution to identify the source of viral news.
WhatsApp is working to set up an office in India as the messaging application can’t risk losing its biggest market with 200M users. But terming the users’ privacy as the major reason, WhatsApp has rejected the demand to allow tracing of messages. Instead of sharing the users’ data, WhatsApp is focussed on educating users about viral and fake messages.
The platform is actively utilizing online and offline means to educate people about how to identify fake news and not become a part of the fake news chain.
Additionally, WhatsApp has also limited the quota for ‘forward message’ for its users. More than 20 people have lost their lives as a result of ‘forwarded messages’ menace.
WhatsApp is in an awkward position in India. The government has threatened to shut down the service if the social platform doesn’t collaborate in putting an end to fake news.
On the other hand, citing the same reasons, Twitter was also on the verge of being blocked in Pakistan. It was said that the social media platform is not cooperating for filtering and removing blasphemous material from its platform.