WhatsApp has had the “delete for everyone” feature for some time now. This feature allows you to delete something that you had sent inadvertently and can save you from embarrassment. You can pull texts or media files that you sent, but it seems it doesn’t work that well with iPhones.
According to Hacker News, a consultant found a privacy issue where the WhatsApp ‘Delete for everyone’ feature doesn’t delete media files sent to iPhone users. The media files sent to iPhone users still remained saved on the iOS device even if they get a notice saying “This message has been deleted.”
This is odd since on Android, when you use the ‘delete for everyone’ feature, it will delete the sen media files from the recipient’s device gallery.
When the consultant reported the bug to WhatsApp, they sent a release saying that this feature is intended to delete the message and there was no guarantee that the media or message will be permanently deleted. WhatsApp also argued that indeed recipients may see your message before deletion.
Interesting enough when Telegram Messenger had a similar privacy flaw in their ‘Delete for everyone’ feature, they patched it immediately
This means you have to be extra careful when sharing media on WhatsApp since if you notice that you’ve sent the wrong media to someone on iOS, it might be too late to get it back from them. I wish WhatsApp would fix this this issue plus remove “this media was deleted” notice they show when you delete something.