WhatsApp Starts Rolling Out ‘Search Messages On Web’ Feature To Tackle Fake News

Forwarded messages on WhatsApp can sometimes annoying to deal with, especially when it comes to misinformation. People come across a plethora of information on social media platforms.

More specifically, WhatsApp is considered as the hub of fake news, as its one of the widely used platforms. As a matter of fact, some keep forwarding rumors without any confirmation. The company has taken various steps to combat fake news quite recently.

The frequently forwarded messages now have two arrow marks rather than one. Moreover, the chat app now allows you to send forwarded messages to only 5 people. As a part of these efforts, this week WaBetaInfo confirmed that the company is working on a new feature that will help its users to track the source of the rumor.

It seems like Facebook engineers have completed the implementation phase and the functionality is ready for everyone. WhatsApp has now officially started rolling out the feature called ‘Search Message On The Web’. With its release, users can now have an option to check the authenticity of these messages.


Some users shared screenshots to report that they can now see a search icon in front of the frequently forwarded messages. So, if you are one of those, use the search icon to look for relevant messages on Google.

WaBetaInfo explains that once you tap on the icon, you will see a dialogue box that confirms, “Would you like to search this on the web? This will upload the message to Google.” A couple of users confirmed that the functionality is now available for everyone in the latest WhatsApp beta for Android version 2.20.94.

It is surprising to see that WhatsApp quickly enabled a feature that was under development. This change came at a time when the world is already dealing with the coronavirus outbreak. In this current prevailing scenario, it is crucial for WhatsApp users to identify fake news.

What’s your take on this move? Do you think that WhatsApp would be successful in discouraging the spread of misinformation?

Alex Schoff

Alex is a technology reporter with a particular interest in Microsoft and Windows. He keeps a close eye on major developments related to Windows 10, Google Chrome, Office 365, and more.