Not all users will be happy about this recently added WhatsApp privacy setting

    The popular messaging app recently added support for disabling 'Read Receipts' for voice notes - which may not be what every user wants.  
    By HT TECH
    | Updated on Mar 15 2021, 11:28 PM IST
    The logo for Facebook Inc.'s WhatsApp messaging app is arranged for a photograph on a smartphone in Hong Kong, China, on Tuesday, July 7, 2020. Internet giants from�Facebook Inc.�to�Google and�Twitter Inc.�say they won't process user data requests from the Hong Kong government amid concerns that a new security law could criminalize protests. Photographer: Lam Yik/Bloomberg
    The logo for Facebook Inc.'s WhatsApp messaging app is arranged for a photograph on a smartphone in Hong Kong, China, on Tuesday, July 7, 2020. Internet giants from�Facebook Inc.�to�Google and�Twitter Inc.�say they won't process user data requests from the Hong Kong government amid concerns that a new security law could criminalize protests. Photographer: Lam Yik/Bloomberg (Bloomberg)
    The logo for Facebook Inc.'s WhatsApp messaging app is arranged for a photograph on a smartphone in Hong Kong, China, on Tuesday, July 7, 2020. Internet giants from�Facebook Inc.�to�Google and�Twitter Inc.�say they won't process user data requests from the Hong Kong government amid concerns that a new security law could criminalize protests. Photographer: Lam Yik/Bloomberg
    The logo for Facebook Inc.'s WhatsApp messaging app is arranged for a photograph on a smartphone in Hong Kong, China, on Tuesday, July 7, 2020. Internet giants from�Facebook Inc.�to�Google and�Twitter Inc.�say they won't process user data requests from the Hong Kong government amid concerns that a new security law could criminalize protests. Photographer: Lam Yik/Bloomberg (Bloomberg)

    It has only been two months since WhatsApp was embroiled in a global privacy controversy after the app announced that it was updating its privacy policy to begin sharing more data with Facebook in connection with WhatsApp users conversations with businesses. The company eventually stated that it would extend the period before users had to accept its new Terms of Service.

    However, while the company still plans to enforce its new terms of service starting in May, the company has begun making a couple of privacy-friendly improvements to its popular voice note service. The company recently updated its privacy settings to respect the setting for “Read Receipts” for voice notes, the same way it does for messages sent on the platform.

    Also read: Multi-device support to encrypted backups: Upcoming WhatsApp features

    WhatsApp feature leaker WABetaInfo first spotted the feature, observing that "...We don’t know if WhatsApp will restore the old behaviour (about read receipt feature) in the next updates (because they didn’t implement this change in the Android version yet), but at the moment the situation is so."

    Most users will not mind the change, while some who are privacy-conscious might even appreciate it. But for the rest, that relied on the feature to keep track of whether their voice notes had been listened to, the new feature might not be very welcome. Now, if your recipient had turned off their Read Receipts previously, you won’t be able to see if they have heard your message even if you have Read Receipts enabled.

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    If you are a WhatsApp user on the latest version of the app for iOS, you can head over to WhatsApp’s settings menu, then go to Account and then tap Privacy and make the necessary changes to start protecting your privacy. It is currently unknown whether the Android version of WhatsApp will add the same toggle, but it is likely to arrive in a future version.

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    First Published Date: 15 Mar, 11:28 PM IST
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