WhatsApp has come up with a ‘search message’ feature to allow users to verify forwarded messages in an attempt to stop the spread of fake news.

The new feature should be visible to anyone on the latest version of the app.

WABetainfo also shared a screenshot of a chat on Twitter in which search option can be seen next to a forwarded message.

However, there is a catch. Not all messages can be verified using the feature. Only frequently forwarded ones will be verified.

There is no confirmation from WhatsApp as to when this feature will be rolled out for all users.

How the search message feature works

  • When you get a frequently forwarded message, you can see a search icon placed next to it.
  • Upon clicking on the search icon, you will be asked if you want to verify it on Google or not.
  • If you say yes, you will be directed to a page on the search engine which will tell you if the information you have received is true.

WhatsApp has also decreased the limit of forwarding messages to one chat at a time in order to check the propagation of fake messages. The forward message limit was earlier set at five.

This is being touted as a crucial step by the Facebook-owned company at a time when the flow of false information has seen a manifold increase amidst the lockdown.

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