The “Bro Ocholla” Incident is the Reason WhatsApp Groups need Secret Chat features

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A screenshot of a Whatsapp chat was doing rounds on Twitter which pointed out why WhatsApp should make drastic changes to groups. The screenshot contained a WhatsApp conversation of a certain “prayer group” of which one member by the name Ocholla misplaced one of his racy chats which was clearly intended for another recipient but rather ended up on the prayer group.This exposed two serious problems about WhatsApp in general: You can be able to see the phone numbers of the members of the group even if you haven’t saved their contact and you cannot be notified of who took the screenshot.

On Telegram, you cannot be able to see a group’s member contact. From the viral screenshot, people could be able to see Ocholla’s number and some people even went ahead to call the said number. Telegram’s implementation is by displaying a person’s name and an avatar in the group which is better than what WhatsApp currently shows.

The second issue is about screenshots, where in a group, you cannot know who took a screenshot. WhatsApp can borrow’s Telegram’s Secret Chat feature which detects if someone has taken a screenshot. It looks something like this:

Generally Telegram’s Secret Chat is awesome in that:

The conversation is encrypted both sides (only you and the recipient see the messages being shared)
The messages cannot be forwarded to other chats
The person who initiates the secret chat can set a self destruct timer where the content disappears after the time expires a
The best of all, it can detect if you took a screenshot.
WhatsApp security settings

Currently on Whatsapp, the only security options you have is controlling if someone sees your “Last seen” time stamp, profile photo, status, blocked contacts list and reading receipts. If WhatsApp was able to hide phone numbers in groups, add the screenshot detecting option on both private and group chats that also notifies who took it, it would prevent incidences like this that involve privacy from happening.

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