The messaging platform announced on August 9 it has added three new layers of protection that will enable users more privacy in their conversations.
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WhatsApp is bringing users new layers of protection that will allow them to have private conversations without hesitation.

The messaging app owned by Meta has introduced three new features that will be added to layers of security that are currently in place including two-step verification, end-to-end encrypted backups, disappearing messages, block and report and more.

Now, users will be able to leave groups silently, choose who can see them when they are online and screenshot blocking.

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"New privacy features coming to WhatsApp: exit group chats without notifying everyone, control who can see when you're online, and prevent screenshots on view once messages," Mark Zuckerberg, founder and CEO of Meta said. "We'll keep building new ways to protect your messages and keep them as private and secure as face-to-face conversations."

According to a new Whatsapp global privacy report, 72% of people value being able to speak in an honest and unfiltered way, with 45% not being able to engage without doing so safely and 59% worried that their private messages will be shared without their knowledge or consent.

"No one should be worried that their messages are being shared or saved. Not only is that a loss of privacy, it's a loss of control over information that you may have shared in confidence," said Ragini Jha, counselor and founder of Cardamom Counseling. "It can also create a lot of anxiety and break trust in relationships. WhatsApp's layers of protection will help in regaining this control, and people deserve to feel safe online."

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The new features are especially beneficial as concerns regarding harassment, doxxing (publishing private info with ill intent), screenshots of private information and inappropriate use of photos.

According to a report by The Economist Intelligence Unit in 2020, 85% of women reported witnessing online violence against other women.

Additionally, the report found that the bulk of the content efforts to counter offline or online gender-based violence was focused on post-experience response rather than prevention, something that WhatsApp's new features would tackle.

"We believe WhatsApp is the most secure place to have a private conversation," Ami Vora, head of product at WhatsApp said. "And to spread the word about these new features, we're also kicking off a global campaign, starting with the UK and India, to educate people about how we work to protect their private conversations on WhatsApp."