WhatsApp Users To Share Personal Data With Facebook By Feb 8

WhatsApp, owned by Facebook, is amending its terms of service to require users to share personal data, including phone numbers and locations with its parent company, Facebook.

It is also reported that if you do not agree to the new terms of service by February 8, you may lose access to your WhatsApp account next month.

WhatsApp announced to users on Wednesday (January 6) that they should agree to let Facebook and its affiliates collect WhatsApp data, including user phone numbers, contact phone numbers, locations, and more.

The update comes in the form of an in-app notification, which users can choose to ignore until the date arrives.

This begs the question: why is WhatsApp making this gesture and how is its parent company benefiting?

Why is WhatsApp doing this gesture?

WhatsApp was first founded in 2009 by two former Yahoo! employees who left due to work related to selling ads and were determined to build an app in the absence of ads.

This is also the reason why WhatsApp started as a paid app. It cost users $ 1 / £ 1 per year, or was free the first year, then cost $ 1 / £ 1 each year thereafter.

It was then bought by Facebook in 2014 for US $ 19 billion, becoming Facebook’s largest property after its messaging service and Instagram.

According to statistics, there are 2.5 billion users worldwide on WhatsApp, making it the most popular messaging platform in the world.

In 2016, WhatsApp announced that it would make the service free for all users.

In the same year, it gave users a unique chance not to share app data with Facebook.

According to the current WhatsApp security and privacy terms, it states that it does not share WhatsApp user data with Facebook for their products or advertisements.

WhatsApp screenshot

“It is important to note that WhatsApp does not share your WhatsApp contacts with Facebook or any other member of the Facebook companies for use for their own purposes, and there are no plans to do so,” the terms of reference read. ‘use.

Messages sent through the app are also end-to-end encrypted, which means that neither WhatsApp nor Facebook can read the messages.

As a result, the question of how Facebook makes money with WhatsApp has long been a question.

A representative from WhatsApp told Ars Technica that the change was to allow businesses to store WhatsApp chats using the Facebook infrastructure.

It is assumed that with this move, Facebook will now use WhatsApp user data to improve Facebook products and deliver more relevant ads.

The new policy also means that Facebook reserves the right to share the data collected within its family of online platforms.

In addition, there will be cases where Facebook decides to share this data with third parties, which will again piss off privacy groups.

The move follows Apple’s new privacy labels on iOS 14, which highlight all the different ways some free apps collect information about their users.

This has been particularly telling for the Facebook family of apps, which has the most comprehensive list of all.

Biz Executives Call On Users To Boycott WhatsApp And Switch To Signal, Telegram Instead

The move prompted users to delete their WhatsApp accounts and switch to smaller, encrypted messaging apps like Signal and Telegram.

UK-based reporter and editor for TechCrunch Mike Butcher tweeted that “Signal and Telegram are now better alternatives if you are concerned about your privacy.”

He shared screenshots of the data collected by WhatsApp versus what Signal and Telegram collect.

Image Credit: Mike Butcher

Tesla CEO Elon Musk was among those who recommended that users switch departments, Tweeter, “Use the signal.”

Some WhatsApp users have criticized the new privacy policy on social media, and many have said they plan to switch to a rival messaging app like Telegram.

“This new update to WhatsApp’s privacy policy is CREEPY and we should be concerned about it,” one user wrote on Twitter.

3 best WhatsApp alternatives

Telegram is probably the best alternative to WhatsApp. According to their privacy terms, they “do not use your data to show you advertisements”.

All data is stored strongly encrypted and the encryption keys in each case are stored in several other data centers in different jurisdictions. This way, local engineers or physical intruders cannot access user data.

You can even set a timer to self-destroy messages in secret conversations after reading the message. When the timer expires, both devices participating in a secret chat are prompted to delete the message (photo, video, etc.).

The second best alternative is Signal. The app is free, ad-free, and does not collect or sell its user data. It also supports encrypted messages.

Image Credit: Callball / AppsVerse Photon Browser / Mobile World Live

The biggest downside to Signal is that it’s nowhere near as popular as mainstream apps like WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger.

He’s popular with journalists, activists, politicians, and others dealing with sensitive information, but he hasn’t seen the same type of wide-scale adoption as his biggest rivals.

The Japanese mobile messaging app LINE also states that it does not sell user data. It also supports message encryption and service features called “Letter Sealing”.

Hence, you can rest assured that your data is well protected with these alternative messaging platforms.

Featured Image Credit: WSPA.com


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Jothi Venkat

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