WhatsApp nowadays has become a dump yard of meaningless messages and hoaxes. Starting from prediction of earthquakes to positive test of Ebola virus in Cadbury, all you have to do is write something ridiculous, send it to a few groups and the people out there do the rest of the work. Recently there has been a lot of cases of mob lynching, In Maharashtra 5 men, wrongly believed to be child abductors (based on a WhatsApp video forward) were beaten to death by a group of 40 people, it was later known that the original video was shot in Pakistan to create awareness about child safety and was forwarded in India after some edits.
Another case happened to Madhya Pradesh when 50 to 60 villagers killed two men believing a rumor spread through WhatsApp stating that few men planning to abduct people and sell their organs have entered their city. Cases like these are spread all over the news, but the real culprit is never caught. Today WhatsApp forwards have become a prime reason for mob lynching, but still, people keep forwarding these fake messages.
So why are the culprits still free?
The reason for this lies on your phone, each conversation you have with your family or friend is encrypted, this helps in keeping your data confidential. This may sound good to a normal person, but it makes it hard for police and other investigators to catch the main culprit.
So what can be done?
For starters, we can stop forwarding fake messages and send real news instead. Educating people could prove to be the best way of fighting this epidemic of WhatsApp forwards. The other way could be using Blockchain technology.
What is Blockchain Technology?
A Blockchain is a continuously growing list of records, called blocks, linked and secured using cryptography. Each block contains a cryptographic hash of the previous block, a timestamp and transaction data. These blocks are interconnected, making all the connected computers, host and client simultaneously, which makes the system resistant to data modification. This is the reason Blockchain serves as the public transaction ledger of the cryptocurrency Bitcoin.
Why Blockchain Technology?
If WhatsApp start using Blockchain Technology all our devices would be interconnected to form a network and all the computers being the host, can be used to monitor the fake messages sent and the culprit could easily be identified. This technology can cut off the epidemic from grass root level but may be prone to hackers. The idea seems to be good but can cost our privacy.
So it is like costing privacy for stopping the crime creating rumors. But what if the privacy gets doomed?
So every coin has its two parts, same like that this condition also. Let see what midway path our government can find out for this till then try to be a responsible citizen and use WhatsApp and other social sites carefully.