American messaging app, WhatsApp has introduced new measures to curb the spread of fake news by reducing the number of times that users can forward messages on the platform.
The Facebook owned business announced that users will now be limited to sharing messages up-to 5 times, which is a reduction from the 20 that was previously allowed.
The move was announced on Monday in Jakarta, Indonesia, in preparation for the country’s general election which is set to happen in April 2019.
“We’re imposing a limit of five messages all over the world as of today,” Victoria Grand, Vice President for Policy and Communications at WhatsApp, said in Indonesia.
This measure was first introduced in India six months ago after frequent reports of mob lynching due to spreading of fake news on WhatsApp.
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The app’s end-to-end encryption allows groups of hundreds of users to exchange texts, photos and video beyond the oversight of independent fact checkers or even the platform itself.
WhatsApp will roll out an update to activate the new forward limit, starting on Monday, WhatsApp’s head of communications Carl Woog said.
Users of devices running Google’s Android system will receive the update first, followed by users of Apple Inc’s (AAPL.O) iOS.
The restriction comes at a time when WhatsApp and Facebook have received a lot of complains and backlash on their role in the spread of fake news.
Facebook recently announced that it had removed hundreds of Facebook pages and accounts on Instagram that were being used to spread fake news.