Whatsapp to Press Forward With Privacy Update

NEW YORK -
The WhatsApp communications app. (AP Photo/Patrick Sison, File)

Whatsapp will go ahead with updating its privacy policies, several weeks after internatioanl uproar and mass exodus from the app when the company first attempt to modify the privacy policy in January had the plans hastily paused.

The messaging platform’s opaque language around its new private policy, and the fact it is owned by Facebook, which is notorious for misusing its users data, had many confused and worried, the Guardian reported. One of Whatsapp’s greatest assets is its end-to-end encryption service and, believing it was ending, millions of users switched to secure apps such as Signal and Telegram.

The changes to Whatsapp include a business chat option that will go through Facebook and allow the parent company to collect data, but no personal information in personal chats or groups will be shared.

“We’ve spent the last several weeks reviewing feedback from users and we spent time (virtually) with people from many countries,” a WhatsApp spokesperson said. “People want to know that WhatsApp and Facebook cannot read or listen to personal conversations as they’re end-to-end encrypted. After that, people want to know that WhatsApp does not keep logs of who everyone is messaging and that we do not share contact lists with Facebook. This is our global approach to protecting people’s most private information and that’s not changing.”

The news terms of service have not changed since they were first announced in January, but the company hopes the information campaign and more time will alleviate users concerns.

For those who do not accept the new terms and conditions, they will be allowed to use the app until May 15th.

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smarcus@hamodia.com