Global instant messaging app WhatsApp on Thursday released its first monthly report in compliance with the new Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code also known as the IT Rules, 2021. The report, published for the period between May 15 and June 15, 2021, states that during this 30-day period, WhatsApp banned a total of 2 million India accounts, while it received a total of 345 reports during this period.
The company made the revelation in its maiden monthly compliance report as mandated by the IT rules. The new IT rules require large digital platforms, with over five million users, to publish compliance reports every month, mentioning the details of complaints received and action taken. The Facebook-owned app often ends up being the focus of discussions on the spread of misinformation and fake news in India. Such fake news and hoaxes are forwarded to tens of thousands of users in hours, and its practically impossible to counter them. Messages and videos circulating in bulk have in the past incited mob violence in India, even leading to deaths. In addition to responding to user complaints, WhatsAapp said it deployed its own tools to prevent abuse on the platform. In the report, WhatsApp said it had received 345 reports in total, cutting across categories such as ban appeal, account support, product support, safety issues and others.