Social networks have helped official entities and the population to access important information about the coronavirus, especially in a time of isolation to combat the disease. However, they have also been the target of hacker attacks, as well as a vehicle for spreading misinformation and fake news, forcing technological giants to take special measures.
In the case of WhatsApp, Facebook is imposing limitations on the sharing of popular messages, which can no longer be sent simultaneously to five people, for only one conversation at a time. In addition, it starts to mark messages that have been forwarded many times with a double arrow tag, to know that what you received was not created by your contact. This measure aims to alert recipients that the message is circulating and may contain false information.
According to his blog, the imposition of the message forwarding limit introduced last year helped to reduce the number of false news by 25% worldwide on his network. However, it makes users aware that they must continue to send and forward messages that they consider useful, fun videos, thoughts and even prayers that have special meanings for their contacts.
WhatsApp has been used to organize tributes to health professionals, for example, who are at the forefront of the pandemic fight. The instant messaging tool has been used by organizations, governments, ministries of health and WHO itself, to disseminate useful and reliable information to the population. The company calls on all users to report misconduct, possible false news, rumors and other messages that violate the code of conduct.
In case you need official data about the coronavirus, WhatsApp makes the information available in Portuguese, directly from the World Health Organization. To do this, you can communicate with a chat bot by sending a message to the number +41 22 501 77 35 through the application, to access a menu with different subjects, among the updated numbers related to COVID-19, news, tips, donations or check facts and false news.