What you need to know about WhatsApp’s new privacy policy

What you need to know about WhatsApp's new Privacy Policy

WhatsApp changing its terms of service and privacy policy is not new. Many tech providers periodically upgrade their services. It is a common procedure for the customer to embrace additional terms and practices in order to continue accessing these facilities. This time, WhatsApp is offering the deadline of 8 February 2021 to approve a new policy or to delete your account.

WhatsApp's revised Terms of Use and Privacy Policy offers further insight into how the chat network can use customer data and, more specifically, share it with its parent company Facebook.

WhatsApp new privacy update

While users were able to opt-out until now, beginning on February 8, they will only have one solution if they do not want their data to be owned by the parent company-uninstall the app and avoid using the service.

What information will WhatsApp be taking?

Some of the information the messaging company will gather and exchange includes location data, IP addresses, handset type, OS, battery level, signal power, browser, mobile network, ISP, language, time zone, and also IMEI. There's also information on how you're texting, calling, what groups you're joining, the status, the profile shot, the last time you've been online, etc. WhatsApp clarifies that your information may be provided to a third-party.
Note that whether you use Google Drive or iCloud to back up your chats, these programs can allow you access to your messages. Technically little has changed, except that WhatsApp is further improving what it means to exchange data as users rely on such third-party integrations.

WhatsApp also introduced a new segment called "Transactions and Payments Data" stating the network would process extra information about payments made through the app. The company says that this is for analytical reasons, as it does give its exclusive identifiers to other Facebook firms.

As compared with other messaging apps, WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger track and keep most user data. If you care about your data online, staying far from these apps is the ideal solution with Signal being the best alternative for you. Below is a chart comparing these apps with iMessage.

Signal, iMessage, WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger Privacy compared
Image Credits: Forbes

There are also updates on deleting a WhatsApp account.

The new Privacy Policy highlights that if someone only deletes the WhatsApp app from their smartphone without using the in-app option to delete my account, the details of the user will stay saved on the site. So just deleting the app from your phone won’t be enough.

The privacy policy is being rolled out globally, however, consumers residing in the European Union got just one bullet point in their update. Owing to stricter privacy regulations better known as the GDPR, consumers of WhatsApp in 27 European countries can not exchange their data with third parties.


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