WhatsApp Group Messages - 2
After deletion.

Facebook-owned social messaging platform, WhatsApp, early this month rolled out the revoke feature to all its users – giving them the ability to deleted miss-sent or embarrassing messages within 7 minutes. However, the the time period seems to be long knowing the fact that some users will see your message even before it’s deleted.

However, the question that has got asking is whether these deleted messages really disappear from the phone? And the answer is NO. Just like when using a Computer or laptop, they all have recovery software in case one deleted sensitive information or they just want to recovery their deleted data, they will be in position to do so. So the same thing goes to mobile phones, there are third party applications that can recover your deleted data.

According to online media reports, a new report claims that WhatsApp messages that are deleted are actually still on the device and can be easily accessed. Spanish Android blog Android Jefe has claimed that deleted messages are present in the notification log of the device. It adds that the recipient can easily access the deleted messages regardless whether it has been deleted from sender’s end.

“What we found is that the messages are stored in the notification register of the Android system. So, it’s just a matter of entering that record to see the messages that the other person deleted,” the blog said.

So how is this done, this is how…

  1. The blog explains that anyone can access deleted WhatsApp messages sent to them via a third-party app Notification History which can be downloaded via Google Play.
  2. After downloading the app, users will have to search the message in the Android notification log. Those users who are using third-party launchers like Nova Launcher it’s even easier.
  3. The notification log can be accessed without the need of an additional app. Long press the home screen, then tap on Widgets > Activities > Settings > Notification log. You can then access the system’s notification log.
  4. On stock Android, a Settings widget can give access to the notification log as well.

Online publishers; Gadgets 360 tried both the Notification History third-party app and the activities method described above and discovered that the trick worked on an Android device.

There are a few limitations, however, as only the messages that have generated a notification on the device, and have been seen or interacted with, can be retrieved. In this case, interaction also refers to swiping away the original notification, whether in the notification bar or a floating message – in which case you’ve also probably seen at least a part of the original message when swiping away. The notification log only saves the messages on the device until it’s restarted. Once restarted, we noticed that the log was cleared, Gadgets 360 reports.

Moreover, the method has a restriction that only the first 100 characters of the deleted message will be visible. The feature is available only for users running Android 7.0 and above. Users can only retrieve text which means any kind of media file cannot be recovered.

  • Koller

    Nowadays it should be common knowledge that nothing ever gets deleted on WhatsApp. They collect metadata and exchange data with Facebook. I wonder how long just trying to always implement new (not really necessary) features to distract from their abuse of privacy really works. There are so many alternatives. I for one use Threema but there are many others. The media should really try to not give this data-monster so much attention.