Amid the constant controversy over Meta’s move to introduce end-to-end encryption by default in all its messaging applications, WhatsApp adds another privacy feature, with the ability to set all your messages to be automatically deleted after 24 hours, 7 days or 90 days.
As WhatsApp explains:
“WhatsApp users will now have the option to include messages that disappear by default for all new conversations. When enabled, any new one-on-one conversations that you or someone else starts will be set to disappear for the selected duration, and we’ve added a new option when creating a group chat that lets you turn it on for the groups you’re creating. This new feature is optional and does not change or delete any of your existing conversations. ”
As you can see here, the new ‘Default Message Timer’ option will allow you to set your conversations to disappear after a certain period of time.
When this option is enabled, a message will be displayed in your chats informing others that this is the default setting you have selected.
“This clearly shows that it’s nothing personal – it’s a choice you made about how you want to communicate with everyone on WhatsApp ahead. Although, of course, if you need a certain conversation to stay lasting, it’s easy to get the conversation back. ”
Message privacy is a key feature of WhatsApp, and this new add-on will no doubt be welcomed by many – although, as noted, WhatsApp’s parent company Meta is currently facing various battles, in different regions, over its moves to introduce standard encryption in all chats in Messenger and Instagram Direct, we are moving to live with WhatsApp.
The bigger picture for Met is the merging of all its messaging tools, enabling interoperability – so if you use Instagram but your friend uses WhatsApp, you’ll still be able to talk to each other in every app.
However, to make this easier, Meta must either reduce the encryption status in WhatsApp or speed up others. And given WhatsApp’s rejection when it announced a relatively small change in user data sharing last year, the latter seems to be the only option that will increase utility and also, potentially, make it harder to unbundle Meta’s application network if antitrust concerns lead to such recommendations.
However, various authorities claim that adding more encryption across Meta networks will help protect criminal activities, making such networks easier for criminals to access, while making it more difficult to track their actions. Theoretically, with added encryption, no one, not even Meta herself, will be able to access the content of private chats, which authorities say will make it harder for law enforcement to find and capture such groups on three platforms.
Meta sought to provide assurance that it would maintain a level of security, although these measures do not actually address primary issues. Meta has also delayed the full introduction of E2E encryption in its applications by 2023, but there is still a way to ensure that all parties are satisfied with the arrangement and that Meta will not see further penalties or enforcement as a result.
That’s why this new launch is coming at an interesting time, and Meta has once again pushed his privacy settings even further, in the midst of this ongoing debate.
Indeed, it is more control for users, which will, for the most part, be beneficial, but there are segments and gaps in this approach that could exacerbate the problems.
Either way, Meta seems to be pushing forward, which means more privacy options for your conversations.
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