Why doesn’t WhatsApp block screenshots?

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In this article, we discover why WhatsApp hasn’t implemented a screenshot detection feature for photos and videos sent using the view once mode. There is something you don’t know and WhatsApp wants to protect you!

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Common questions Answers
Topic about? Screenshot detection
Article for? WhatsApp for Android and iOS.
Previous article? WhatsApp beta for Android 2.21.14.6: what’s new? WhatsApp is working on video quality settings!
SCREENSHOT DETECTION

WhatsApp has released a new feature on WhatsApp beta for Android called view once this week: the feature allows you to send photos and videos that disappear when the recipient opens them once.

This feature is very useful, but a lot of users complained because WhatsApp didn’t implement a system to block or notify when the recipient has taken a screenshot or video capture. The reason why WhatsApp made this decision is to protect you!
Yes, WhatsApp wants to be sure that you correctly use the feature, avoiding any bad situation, but let’s better see what’s the real issue.
Unfortunately, there are several ways to bypass screenshot detection, in particular on WhatsApp for Android: there are several apps that are able to cheat the operating system, so they can silently take screenshots or video recordings without sending any notification.
This situation is very worrying because the sender will never know that the recipient has taken a screenshot, so he feels safe, but this is not so. When an application ensures that screenshots are blocked or notified, the sender could send something private, being sure that the media won’t be shared with third parties, but the recipient could take a photo from another phone.
WhatsApp could also start introducing several ways to detect these malicious apps, but this is an endless fight because new apps and methods could be developed. It’s better to declare “the recipient can take a screenshot, be careful” instead of “screenshots are blocked”, but that’s not the reality. Avoiding the implementation of a screenshot detection feature, WhatsApp encourages you to be careful about what you share using this feature. If they implemented a method to detect screenshots, you would feel safe, but we have explained that you are never safe.
A good example of usage for view once is to send photos and videos that are not important, so they are immediately deleted after being opened and don’t take up storage.

If you love WhatsApp and you’re interested to discover more changes, articles and features, stay tuned with us and follow WABetaInfo on Twitter to be notified when there is news!

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