Wednesday, September 15, 2021
HomeTV47Innovation & TechExplainer: Millions of WhatsApp users risk losing their accounts

Explainer: Millions of WhatsApp users risk losing their accounts

In Summary
  • Popular social media communication outlet WhatsApp is making changes to its privacy policy.
  • The new changes require all users outside Europe to share their personal data.

Have you spotted a pop-up on your phone in the recent past suggesting that WhatsApp has updated its privacy policy? I am sure that if you have experienced this, you promptly clicked the “Agree’ button to proceed.

WhatsApp is making changes to its privacy policy requiring all users outside of Europe to share their personal data, including numbers and location, with Facebook.

The over two billion active WhatsApp users now stand a risk of losing their accounts completely if they fail to agree to these new terms by February 8.

The new terms read: “As part of the Facebook Companies, WhatsApp receives information from, and shares information with, the other Facebook Companies.

‘We may use the information we receive from them, and they may use the information we share with them, to help operate, provide, improve, understand, customize, support, and market our Services and their offerings, including the Facebook Company Products.’

A WhatsApp spokesperson told Daily Mail that although the free app will start sharing data with its parent company (Facebook), it is encrypted by default “meaning Facebook will not be able to see the contents of your messages.”

The spokesperson, however, adds that Facebook will be able to see who you are messaging and how often you do that.

These data will also be available to WhatsApp; battery level, signal strength, app version, browser information, mobile network, connection information (including phone number, mobile operator or ISP), language and time zone, IP address, device operations information, and identifiers (including identifiers unique to Facebook Company Products associated with the same device or account).

WhatsApp and Instagram are all part of Facebook. The latest change is a bid by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg to integrate the social media platforms into one, for better service delivery.

The new policy will help improve relevant offers and ads across Facebook Company products. This will enable users to pay for products on WhatsApp using Facebook Pay.

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