#Google Is Indexing #WhatsApp Group #Chat Links, Making Even Private Groups Discoverable; #socialmedia #Privacy #BigTech #Regulation

New York (The Verge) — Google is indexing WhatsApp group chat links, making even private groups discoverable trib.al/a5C0Svd.

Invitations to WhatsApp group chats are being indexed by Google, making the invite links, including links to private group chats, discoverable and available to anyone who wants to join.

Motherboard was able to find private groups using specific Google searches (and the results included a lot of porn-sharing groups). Once they joined a group — which was intended for NGOs accredited by the UN — they had access to all of the participants and their phone numbers.

Group admins can invalidate a link to a chat if they want to, but Wildon says he discovered that, in those situations, WhatsApp only generates a new link; it doesn’t necessarily disable the original link. WhatsApp group links come with warnings attached, reminding the person who generates the link only to share it with people they trust. Kim Lyons/@verge

Source: verge, full story

 

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