How to enable disappearing messages in WhatsApp

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Judit Llordés
@juditllordes

WhatsApp is finally prioritizing privacy and security and adding many useful features to the app. Earlier this year, the Facebook-backed company released a view to post endangered media in chat. With a recent update, WhatsApp is bringing disappearing messages further. Here's how to enable and use disappearing messages in WhatsApp.

The pop-up message feature was limited to just 7 days. WhatsApp is taking this forward by adding new duration options like 24 hours, 7 days and 90 days.



ENABLE MESSAGES THAT DISAPPEAR BY DEFAULT IN WHATSAPP

The company allows users to enable the pop-up message timer by default for new chats and groups. It's hidden in the Settings menu. Here's how you can log in and enable a message timer in WhatsApp.

  • Open WhatsApp on Android or iPhone.
  • Tap the three-dot menu at the top and open Settings.
  • Select Account.
  • Tap Privacy.
  • Select Predefined Message Timers in the Ephemeral Messages menu.

You can select 24 hours, 7 days or 90 days. All new individual chats will start with disappearing messages set for the duration selected when you enable this option.

This setting will not affect your existing chats. Your current WhatsApp will not be affected by this change.

All your new chats are set to disappear after the set time.

ENABLE THE DISAPPEARANCE OF MESSAGES FOR WHATSAPP GROUPS

You have an option to enable disappearing messages in WhatsApp groups as well. When you create a new group from scratch, you will see an option to enable and use the message time for groups. Here's how it works.

  • Open WhatsApp on your phone.
  • Tap the More menu at the top and select New group.
  • Select group members from the following menu and move on.
  • Give it a group name and you'll see the Ephemeral Messages option below.

Tap it and select the message timer to automatically delete WhatsApp messages. You can select 24 hours, 7 days or 90 days. We hope WhatsApp offers more time to choose from, such as 30 days, 45 days or 60 days.



USE DISAPPEARING MESSAGES FOR EXISTING WHATSAPP CHATS

When you enable message disappearance from WhatsApp Settings, it will only apply to new chats. Your existing chat threads remain unaffected. However, you can easily allow messages to disappear for any chat. That's how.

  • Open WhatsApp and select a chat where you want to enable disappearing messages.
  • Tap the contact's name at the top.
  • Select Ephemeral Messages.
  • Select Message Timer from the following menu and you are ready to see the messages disappear after a set time.

USE DISAPPEARING MESSAGES FOR EXISTING WHATSAPP GROUPS

Although WhatsApp has implemented an option to add a timer for messages when creating a group, you can add disappearing messages for existing WhatsApp. Follow the steps below to make changes.

  • Open a WhatsApp group.
  • Tap the group name at the top.
  • From the Ephemeral Messages menu, select the message timer for the group.

In some cases, you may not have permission to change settings. Group administrators or those who have permission from group administrators can make changes.


DISABLE MESSAGES THAT DISAPPEAR IN WHATSAPP

If you don't want messages to disappear from all chats, you can always disable the option from WhatsApp Settings.

The thing is, you may not want to enable a message timer for all new WhatsApp chats. Some WhatsApp chats may be too important for you to keep messages longer. Disable Disappearing Messages in WhatsApp using below steps.


  • Open WhatsApp and go to Settings.
  • Select Account and open Privacy.
  • Tap the default message timer.
  • Disable disappearing messages for new WhatsApp chats and WhatsApp will not automatically delete messages for you.
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