Are you unknowingly spamming your contacts with far too many good morning messages, forwarding unverified information you think is helpful or overusing WhatsApp’s broadcast lists? While well-intentioned, you might risk your account getting banned if it involves activity that violates the company’s Terms of Service, for example, if it involves spam, scams or puts WhatsApp users’ safety at risk. According to WhatsApp’s monthly user safety report, over 2.3 million Indian accounts were banned in the month of August alone.
WhatsApp deploys a combination of security measures and processes to help keep users safe on the platform and applies spam detection technology to spot and take action on accounts engaging in abnormal behaviour to stop spam.
Here are some tips to prevent your account from getting banned:
- Think twice before forwarding messages: WhatsApp has created a label for all forwarded messages and limits the number of times you can forward messages as a way to encourage users to reconsider before sharing. If you aren’t sure whether something’s true or don’t know the source of the message, don’t forward it.
- Avoid automated or bulk messages: Don’t bulk message, auto-message, or auto-dial using WhatsApp. WhatsApp uses both machine learning technology and reports from users to detect and ban accounts that send unwanted automated messages.
- Avoid over-using broadcast lists: Messages sent using a broadcast list will only be received when users have added your phone number to their contact list. Frequent use of broadcast messages may lead people to report your messages, and WhatsApp will ban accounts that are reported multiple times.
- Ask for permission and respect boundaries: You should get permission from contacts before you add them to a group. If you add someone to a group and they remove themselves, honour their decision. If a contact asks you to stop messaging them, you should remove the contact from your address book and refrain from contacting them again.
- Communicate with known contacts: Only send messages to those who have contacted you first or have requested you to contact them on WhatsApp.
- Don’t Violate WhatsApp’s Terms of Services: Keep in mind that the reason for an account ban is a violation of WhatsApp’s Terms of Services which includes publishing falsehoods and engaging in illegal, defamatory, intimidating, harassing behavior, among others. For more information or examples of activities that violate WhatsApp’s Terms of Service, you can review the “Acceptable Use of Our Services” section of the Terms of Service.
If you think your account was banned by mistake, you can follow these steps:
- Email WhatsApp or tap request a review in the app, WhatsApp will look into your case and get back to you as soon as they complete the review.
- When you request a review in the app, you’ll be prompted to enter a 6-digit registration code sent to you via SMS.
- Once you’ve entered it, you’ll be able to submit your request for a review and add details to support your case.