Meta-owned WhatsApp on June 20 announced two new privacy-related features for the messaging platform: Silence Unknown Callers: This feature will automatically silence calls from unknown numbers. While the phone won't ring, the calls will still be visible in the call history. This feature should help in screening out "spam, scams, and calls from unknown people," the platform noted. Users can turn on this feature in the app's Privacy settings. Privacy Checkup: A step-by-step feature, it will walk users through some of the privacy settings available to them so that users can choose their desired level of privacy. Some of the settings that the checkup feature will cover include choosing who can contact you, who can see your personal info, and controlling whether people can see if you read a message or not. The first feature comes a few weeks after reports of rampant spam calls on WhatsApp began surfacing, especially in India. Users complained about receiving calls from unknown international numbers originating from countries like Russia, the US, Ethiopia, Kenya, Vietnam, Indonesia, and Malaysia. In many cases, the calls were to promote fraudulent job offers or other types of scams. Following the public outcry, India's junior IT Minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar said that the government will issue a notice to Meta to address the issue. Eventually, WhatsApp rolled out back-end updates to address the issue, but the Silence Unknown calls feature is the first consumer-facing feature targeted at this issue. Separately, the Indian government is working on new regulations that could…
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