Today, Google announced that it’s rolling out two features for its Messages app on Android that are designed to help you weed out annoyances and know that you’re texting with a real person.
One of those features is spam detection for US users, which first launched in select countries in January. If the Messages app detects a suspected spam message, Google says it will show you a warning where you can confirm if the text is spam or not. The feature will be turned on automatically, but you’ll get a notification once it rolls out to you. You’ll also be able to report spam at any time, and you can block the conversation if the spam messages don’t stop coming.
If you have spam detection turned on, Google will temporarily store the phone numbers for messages you receive from people who aren’t in your contacts. This is to help it better identify spammers, but the company says the phone numbers won’t be associated with individual users.
Google is also rolling out Verified SMS for messages you send to certain businesses. When you’re messaging with a verified business, you’ll see the business name, its logo, and a verification badge in your message thread. Messages will be verified on a per-message basis.
1-800 Flowers, Banco Bradesco, Kayak, Payback, and SoFi are “among the first brands” that will send messages with Verified SMS, according to Google. Google Identity Verification and Google Pay will also be enrolled in the program. Verified SMS is rolling out “gradually” in nine countries, starting with Brazil, Canada, France, India, Mexico, Philippines, Spain, the UK, and the US.