Home TECH WhatsApp privacy policy tweaked in Europe after record fine

WhatsApp privacy policy tweaked in Europe after record fine


WhatsApp is rewriting its privacy policy as a result of a huge data protection fine earlier this year.

Following an investigation, the Irish data protection watchdog issued a €225m (£190m) fine – the second-largest in history over GDPR – and ordered WhatsApp to change its policies.

WhatsApp is appealing against the fine, but is amending its policy documents in Europe and the UK to comply.

However, it insists that nothing about its actual service is changing.

Instead, the tweaks are designed to “add additional detail around our existing practices”, and will only appear in the European version of the privacy policy, which is already different from the version that applies in the rest of the world.

See also  Instagram will now tell users when to take a break from using the app

“There are no changes to our processes or contractual agreements with users, and users will not be required to agree to anything or to take any action in order to continue using WhatsApp,” the company said, announcing the change.

The new policy takes effect immediately.

User revolt

In January, WhatsApp users complained about an update to the company’s terms that many believed would result in data being shared with parent company Facebook, which is now called Meta.

Many thought refusing to agree to the new terms and conditions would result in their accounts being blocked.

In reality, very little had changed. However, WhatsApp was forced to delay its changes and spend months fighting the public perception to the contrary.

See also  Save on Bose headphones and iPhone accessories

During the confusion, millions of users downloaded WhatsApp competitors such as Signal.

WhatsApp launches privacy campaign after backlash

Writing about the new tweaks required by the Irish Data Protection Commissioner, WhatsApp directly addressed those kinds of concerns.

“This update does not change how we process, use or share user data with anyone, including Meta, nor does it change how we operate our service,” it wrote.

And “users will not be required to agree to anything new or to take any action in order to keep using WhatsApp”, it added.

The company was also keen to stress that its service is, and continues to be, end-to-end encrypted, meaning messages can only be read by the sender and recipient.

See also  Stranger Things 4 will have a summer 2022 release date


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here