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Facebook Limits WhatsApp Forwards Globally to Curb Misuse

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FacebookFB owned WhatsApp will now allow users to forward messages to only five users/groups at a time as opposed to the earlier limit of 20. Notably, the company rolled out an update for the new limit, starting this Monday, first to Android users followed by iOS users.

The move was enacted in order to restrict the spread of fake news and misinformation on the platform. The company first implemented this move in India last July after fake news resulted in killings and lynching attempts in the country.

Additionally, Facebook noted that WhatsApp continues to use anti-spam detection capabilities to terminate any unwanted automated activities. Moreover, the company placed ads in newspaper, radio and TV, cautioning India-based users of the consequences of spreading fake news.

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WhatsApp: A Key Business

WhatsApp, with an estimated user base of more than 1.3 billion is one of Facebook's key businesses. The company's efforts to monetize the platform further strengthens this belief.

Notably, Facebook will soon roll out ads on WhatsApp Status. This is expected to attract ad dollars, thereby aiding the top line. Additionally, the company's WhatsApp Business application program interface (API) is expected to generate revenues for the company.

The API will allow users to directly contact businesses for any queries. The users will be charged between "half a penny and 9 cents depending on the country" after a free service for the first 24 hours. Some of the companies testing the feature include Netflix NFLX , Uber and Singapore Airlines among others. WhatsApp business currently has more than 3 million accounts.

Facebook Adds Sensitive Features to WhatsApp, Boosts Security

Moreover, Facebook unveiled WhatsApp payment feature for a few users in India, making it the first country to support the payment feature on the platform. Moreover, the company is in the process of developing cryptocurrency, which allows WhatsApp users to transfer money globally. The program is initially focused on the Indian remittances market, per sources close to the company.

As Facebook is adding such important and sensitive features to WhatsApp, it is ramping up efforts to secure the platform. However, owing to its scale of operations, the company is finding it difficult to completely curb misuse of the platform and comply with all the government regulations. This is evident as Facebook has repeatedly come under fire from countries across the globe including the recent civil proceedings against both Facebook and Twitter TWTR by Russia.

Nevertheless, the Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) stock continues to pour investments to secure its platform. This may boost user trustworthiness in the long haul and help Facebook regain its popularity over Snap SNAP .

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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