Even without having access to messages due to end-to-end encryption, WhatsApp can inspect the groups and remove them if necessary. And some users of the app claim they were banned simply for participating in groups with suspicious names.
The first report was published about a month ago in Reddit. According to the user, one of the participants changed the name of the group of colleagues from the college to something illegal, which led to the banning of all those who participated in the conversation.
In answer, another user said he experienced a similar situation after a person changed the name of the school group, which had about 100 participants. After the change, they were penalized by the application.
a third user said on Thursday (7) that a joke from his friend caused a ban on all users of a group they participated in. He also changed the group’s name to something illegal, which would have caused the accounts to be deleted.
With the decision, they would have been forced to change the phone number to create another account. According to the WABetaInfo, the measure seems to affect mainly groups that have a suspicious name and that are very old or have many participants.
Also according to the website, WhatsApp should ban groups via metadata. That’s because messages and calls are encrypted from end to end and cannot be accessed by anyone not in the conversation.
Through metadata, the application would obtain information such as the group’s name, description and creation date. The WhatsApp initiative has a good purpose, to avoid using the service to commit crimes.
However, suspicious users are not always, in fact, committing improper acts. In addition, the current procedure allows, for a variety of reasons, a single user to be able to change the name of the group and ban the accounts of all its members.
Wanted by Tecnoblog, WhatsApp explained that “it has advanced machine learning systems to detect accounts that violate the app’s guidelines and uses all available unencrypted information, including user reports to detect and prevent abuse.”
The company also said that banning the account is the penalty for abusive behavior and offers the option to limit administrators the ability to rename groups.