India threatens action over WhatsApp privacy change - Mobile World Live

India threatens action over WhatsApp privacy change

20 MAY 2021

India’s government reportedly warned it would take steps against WhatsApp if it failed to address a request to withdraw an updated privacy policy introduced less than a week ago.

The Times of India stated the Facebook subsidiary had seven days to reply to a notice issued by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology asking for the policy to be abandoned over claims it violated national laws.

The government also plans to consider various options to counteract the update, claiming user choice and privacy rights were undermined by the change.

In March, the Competition Commission of India initiated a probe into the update.

WhatsApp told The Times of India the update did not impact private messages and instead focuses on providing information on options for users to contact businesses.

The change caused controversy due to concerns it granted WhatsApp parent Facebook access to users’ private data, along with a warning from the messaging unit of service disruption if users did not accept the updated terms.

This resulted in a delay in introducing the change, which was originally scheduled for February.

WhatsApp eventually implemented the change on 15 May.



Yanitsa Boyadzhieva

Yanitsa joins Mobile World Live as a Reporter based in London. She has more than 5 years’ experience at various media outlets in her home country Bulgaria. She started her career as a political reporter, followed by taking editor roles...

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