WhatsApp is the most used instant messaging application in the world, since it is installed on the phones of 1.5 billion people. For that reason, it is the perfect platform to spread rumors, hoaxes, and misinformation in general. This type of content spreads with more virulence in times of electoral elections and other public and social events of great importance.
“India, the country with the most WhatsApp users in the world, is approaching elections and the messaging app extreme precautions.”
Throughout the world, WhatsApp eliminates about two million accounts each month, 20% of which is automatically deleted at the time of its creation, and 75% corresponds to automatic accounts. The codes used by the system are, among others, the IP address of the user, the country of origin of the telephone number, the age of the account, if it started sending a large number of messages shortly after registering, etc.
But malicious users do not make it easy either. We have detected programs capable of running several WhatsApp accounts at the same time, special devices that allow the introduction of dozens of SIM cards…
It is to be hoped that with Facebook’s new commitment to curb the hoaxes (which cost hundreds of deaths in Myanmar), WhatsApp further refines its fight against misinformation, especially in developing countries.
It is the case of India. The country, whose presidential elections are approaching, is the largest market worldwide WhatsApp. This has caused the application to be closely monitored by the Indian authorities. To prevent the application from being blocked in India, WhatsApp wants to guarantee that the misinformation is not spread through the app.