Does Red Tick on WhatsApp Mean Govt is Tracking your Messages? Fact Check

Viral message on Whatsapp claims that the government is monitoring the Whatsapp account of the users.
Does Red Tick on WhatsApp Mean Govt is Tracking your Messages?  Fact Check

New Delhi: Ever since the announcement of the Centre's new IT rules in February, fake Whatsapp forward messages have been circulating the internet. Some of these messages have gone viral which claim that two blue ticks and one red tick would mean the government is taking some action against the user and three red ticks would mean that the government has started court proceedings. This claim is fake and such similar messages have gone viral in the past year as well.

The message says that Whatsapp has introduced communication rules and guidelines. And this comes at a time when Whatsapp has filed a petition in the Delhi high court against the new IT rules which requires the social media platforms to have a new traceability method. This has made the people believe the forwarded messages to be true without any fact check.

The messages claim that the user's call will be recorded and all the social media platforms of individuals will be monitored by the government. The fake message further states that the government will take action against any negative messages about the government and any messages related to religious topics will lead to an arrest of an individual. However, all these claims are false and the government has urged the users to not believe such misinformation and indulge in its circulation. The fake viral message has made some unrealistic claims like, all the user's devices will be connected to Ministry.
To debunk such misinformation the government has posted several tweets in the official handle of PIB fact check. The ministry has urged the people to refrain from forwarding such messages without a proper fact check.

Whatsapp has not introduced any such guidelines or rules and it is an already known fact that Whatsapp ensures end-to-end encryption to its users. This means that no third party can have access to one's private messages.

New IT Rules:
Given the situation IT Minister, Ravi Shankar Prasad on Thursday has said that ordinary users of the app will not be affected by the new IT rules. He took to Twitter and expressed that the new IT rules have been announced to get hold of the offenders who initiate specific crimes mentioned in the rules. The Union Minister further expressed that the Government recognizes and respects the citizen's fundamental 'Right to Privacy'. The rules have been made to get hold of the originator of certain offensive messages.
The Union Minister also mentioned that the social media companies will have to have a grievance redressal officer, a compliance officer, and a nodal officer. RS Prasad added that these measures have been adapted to prevent the misuse of social media platforms.

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