Google this week started rolling out Verified SMS, a feature aimed at protecting users from spam and phishing attempts, to the Messages application.
The latest beta version of Google Messages, the company's dedicated text messaging app, now includes a feature that will verify whether received messages were sent by an authentic business or not. This tool, called Verified SMS, was covered first by Android Police earlier this year, but at the time, it was unclear what the feature would entail. Now that the feature has been spotted rolling out, the purpose of it has become clear.
When a text message is sent by a business with an identity confirmed by Google, it will feature a "verified" icon so that users are not tricked into tapping any dangerous link or revealing any private information to questionable numbers. Thus far, the app only verifies messages from businesses who are registered with Verified SMS. The company recommends avoiding "replying with sensitive info or opening links that you aren't sure you trust."
Verified SMS is turned on by default, but it can be disabled within the Messages app settings. As of now, the feature is only available in the US in the most recent Google Messages beta. The company did not disclose when or whether it will roll out to the stable version of the app.