Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Germany Wants Facebook To Stop Collecting WhatsApp User Data

Last month WhatsApp decided to put into place a rather controversial policy that would basically collect user data and share it with Facebook. Safe to say that many users weren’t too thrilled about it, although the upside is that this collection of data is opt-in, meaning that if you choose not to share your data, you won’t have to.
However it seems that over in Germany, the country’s privacy regulator has decided to step in, and has since ordered Facebook stop collecting and storing the data of German users who are using its WhatsApp app, and to delete all data that has since been collected and shared with Facebook.
Johannes Caspar, the Hamburg Commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information said that back when Facebook first acquired WhatsApp, they made a promise that data would not be shared between both companies, but now obviously that has changed. According to Caspar,“The fact that this is now happening is not only a misleading of their users and the public, but also constitutes an infringement of national data protection law.”
While we can’t say with certainty that ultimately Facebook will acquiesce, the company did release a statement that says, “We are open to working with the Hamburg DPA in an effort to address their questions and resolve any concerns.” Hopefully victory in Germany would act as a precedent in other countries where similar concerns have been raised.

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