WhatsApp announced today that its latest feature can automatically silence incoming calls from unknown numbers. Go to WhatsApp settings, click on “Privacy”, select “Calls”, and then turn on the “Mute Unknown Callers” switch to make this setting. WhatsApp says the feature will help “screen spam, scams, and calls from unknown parties for added protection.”
When enabled, the feature eliminates all signs of incoming calls from unknown numbers , including audible and visual alerts within the app. However, the muted call will still appear in your recent calls list with a “Mutated unknown caller” note next to it in case you want to call back.
This feature was added following reports of an increase in spam calls, particularly affecting users in India. A month ago, TechCrunch reported that WhatsApp had rolled out a new enforcement system that used machine learning to reduce the number of spam calls by 50%. Now, with a new mute feature in the app, users can try to mute any spam calls that aren’t caught by the service’s automatic filters.
In addition to the mute function, WhatsApp said it has added a new feature, the “Privacy Checkup” feature, which aims to gradually inform users of the privacy and security options WhatsApp offers. Checks span multiple categories, including letting users choose who can contact them, and adding extra security to their accounts, such as two-step verification or requiring biometric authentication to open apps.