WhatsApp will share user data with Facebook regardless of Delhi HC order demanding otherwise

WhatsApp has refused to comply with a Delhi High Court order to delete all user data collected before 25 September. The order required WhatsApp to also delete the data of all users who opted out of WhatsApp’s new privacy policy.


Update 29 September 20:55 – In response to this post, WhatsApp has reached out with a response attributed to its spokesperson: “WhatsApp will comply with the order from the Delhi High Court. We plan to proceed with the privacy policy and terms update in accordance with the Court’s order. The Court’s emphasis on the importance of user choice and consent is encouraging.”

WhatsApp has refused to comply with a Delhi High Court order to delete all user data collected before 25 September. The order required WhatsApp to also delete the data of all users who opted out of WhatsApp’s new privacy policy.

WhatsApp spokesperson Anne Yeh reportedly told Mashable India that, "The ruling has no impact on the planned policy and terms of service updates.” The company stated that they will share all information with Facebook as planned, in direct violation of the order.

The changes as outlined by WhatsApp’s updated privacy policy came into effect on 25 September. The company had originally promised to safeguard user privacy and, in fact, rolled out features like end-to-end encryption to further cement their word.

However, with their updated privacy policy, they’ve completely gone back on their word. If you accept the policy, the company now has the right to collect as much information on you as your account and phone can provide them. This includes, but is not limited to, location data, device data, email IDs, phone numbers, contact details, when you were last seen online, etc.

Given the fact that the service uses end-to-end encryption it does seem like your messages at least will not be accessible. But for how long?

The new policy gives WhatsApp the right to share all of this information with Facebook and its affiliated advertisers.

Following the update, two Indian students approached the Delhi High Court, alleging that WhatsApp’s updated privacy policy violated the rights and privacy of millions of users.

WhatsApp is also under fire in Germany over the same issue. A German privacy regulator ordered WhatsApp to stop collecting and storing data of German users and to delete all data that has been collected thus far.

The German regulator accused the company of misleading the public and infringing national data protection law.

WhatsApp has decided to appeal the order in Germany.

WhatsApp has an estimated 100 million active users in India and 35 million active users in Germany.

If you're worried about your privacy, it might be a good idea to try a different messaging service like Telegram.

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