The new terms, delivered in early 2021, have sparked outrage among tech experts, privacy advocates, billionaire businessmen and government agencies, and sparked a wave of shortcomings in competing services. WhatsApp says the change is needed to help it integrate better with other Facebook products.
1. What does politics say?
WhatsApp now reserves the right to share the data it collects about you on the wider Facebook network, which includes Instagram, regardless of whether you have accounts or profiles there. Much of WhatsApp’s revenue-generating policy is largely in line with the past, but it now clearly states that “WhatsApp receives information and shares information with other Facebook companies. We may use the information we receive from them and they may use the information we share with them to assist in the operation and marketing of services. The option to share data with Facebook has been around for years, but it was just that: optional. It becomes mandatory from February 8.
2. Can Facebook read my WhatsApp now?
No. Your conversations are end-to-end encrypted, which means that not even WhatsApp can access them. However, using WhatsApp, you can share your contact list, location, financial information and usage data, as well as your unique phone ID, among other types of so-called metadata.
3. Why does Facebook want data?
He says he needs it to help operate and improve his offerings. Overall, almost all of the $ 21.5 billion in revenue generated by Facebook in the third quarter of 2020 came from ads and there is none on WhatsApp. The company wants to be able to offer more targeted ads to people on Facebook and Instagram, also knowing their WhatsApp usage habits and allowing companies to accept WhatsApp payments for items that, for example, have been clicked on in Instagram ads.
4. What are the consequences?
The office of Turkish Presidents Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his country’s Defense Ministry have said they are abandoning WhatsApp. Technology billionaire Elon Musk has approved the rival Signal app for its 42 million followers on Twitter Inc. On January 10, he wrote on Twitter: “We continue to break traffic records and add capacity as more and more people accept how much they dislike Facebook’s new terms.”
5. Is politics the same worldwide?
No. There is a difference in the text of Europe compared to the rest of the world. In the US, for example, WhatsApp explicitly states that it wants to allow users to start linking their Facebook Pay account to “pay for things on WhatsApp” and be able to chat with friends on other Facebook products, such as Portal, “connecting your WhatsApp account”. This text does not appear in the European version.
6. Why is Europe treated differently?
European data protection authorities, which under the European Union’s strict privacy laws have the power to impose fines on companies up to 4% of global annual revenue if they violate the blockchain rules, in 2016 expressed “serious concerns” about the sharing of WhatsApp user data.
EU antitrust authorities in 2017 fined Facebook € 110 million (US $ 134 million) for misleading regulators in its review of WhatsApp acquisition in 2014, but failed to revoke approval to merge. Facebook had told EU regulators during the review that it was technically impossible to combine WhatsApp data with its other services.