Are you a WhatsApp user? Feeling betrayed?
We have seen this time and time again. In this case, it’s a digital bait-and-switch.
An app makes certain promises to users, acquiring millions of them, then just like that the promise is no more.
This is what has happened with the popular messaging service WhatsApp, announcing that, under their new terms and conditions, they will now share your personal information – including your phone number, when you are using the service and who you are communicating with, and more – with its parent company, Facebook.
WhatsApp originally prided itself on privacy, no more. As a 100 per cent Facebook -owned company, those values are out the window.
What WhatsApp said vs what has happened
Back in 2014 when WhatsApp was first acquired, WhatsApp co-founder and CEO, Jan Koum, claimed that nothing would change for WhatsApp users: “Here’s what will change for you, our users: nothing. WhatsApp will remain autonomous and operate independently” he assured, “And you can still count on absolutely no ads interrupting your communication.”
Despite Koum’s claims that nothing would change, I certainly cannot say that this new policy shift is surprising. Back in March of 2015 Facebook already discreetly changed the rules 20 months before when nobody was looking.
WhatsApp’s recent pride in its announcement of its new end-to-end encryption should be met with snickers.
The whole point of having encryption is that everything you do is private, not just what you say.
Demonstrating false bravado while adding insult to injury, WhatsApp gamely says there is a way to partially opt-out of these changes, but if you read the fine print – the user tracking and data sharing remain nonetheless.
WhatsApp is attempting to claim that these changes are in the best interest of the user (by fighting spam and increasing business-to-consumer communication), but one should not be so quick to blindly click accept.
WhatsApp’s new policies, self-admittedly, are aimed at coordinating more with Facebook, so that they can “show you more relevant ads if you have an account with them.”
Simply, WhatsApp is selling out to make more profit off of its users.
How To Stop It
- Open your WhatsApp
- Click on Settings
- Click on Account
- You will see “Share My Account”
- If you read underneath, you will see that all your information from WhatsApp is shared with Facebook.
- Quickly switch it off