Facebook-owned WhatsApp has reportedly agreed to meet all demands that were proposed by the government of India, except for the traceability of messages.
Recently WhatsApp CEO Chris Daniels met with IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad to discuss the problem of fake news in India. Union IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad proposed requirements such as the appointment of a grievance officer, setting a corporate entity in India, storing data locally to set up payments operations in India, and lastly to ensure traceability of messages.
According to a report by the Times of India, WhatsApp has agreed to comply with all the message except for message traceability.
Reportedly, the Facebook-owned messaging app affirmed to the government that it has no access to user data since it is end-to-end encrypted. Moreover, in violating the rule would essentially put the user’s privacy at risk.
For those who do not know, the end-to-end encryption ensures that WhatsApp messages can be read only by the person who receives the messages and who sends them. As per WhatsApp, even they do not have the access to read the messages.
This comes at a point of time when WhatsApp is looking forward to beginning its UPI-enabled payments service in India, but it postponed a widespread launch due to the issue of fake news which led to mob-lynchings in various parts of the country.