WhatsApp is forcing users to share personal data with Facebook, and Elon Musk is urging people to switch to Signal, a smaller encrypted messaging app
- WhatsApp is changing its terms of service to force users to share personal data including phone numbers and locations with its parent company, Facebook.
- Some critics, including Tesla CEO Elon Musk, have suggested users move to the encrypted messaging apps Signal and Telegram.
- A WhatsApp representative told Ars Technica the change was to allow businesses to store WhatsApp chats using Facebook infrastructure.
- The messaging app sells itself as a privacy-focused service.
WhatsApp, the encrypted messaging app that sells itself as a privacy-focused service, will start forcing users to share personal data with Facebook, its parent company.
In an announcement sent to users on Wednesday, WhatsApp said users would have to agree to let Facebook and its subsidiaries collect WhatsApp data including users' phone numbers, contacts' phone numbers, locations, and more.If users do not agree by February 8, they will lose access.
"Signal and Telegram are now better alternatives if you are concerned about your privacy," the TechCrunch editor Mike Butcher tweeted. He shared comparisons of the data WhatsApp collects versus what Signal and Telegram collect.
—Mike Butcher (@mikebutcher) January 7, 2021Tesla CEO Elon Musk was among those who recommended users switch services, tweeting, "Use Signal."
Nine hours earlier, Musk seemed to criticized Facebook, via a sardonic meme, as bearing responsibility for the rioters who attacked the US Capitol on Wednesday.Facebook bought WhatsApp in 2014, and in 2016 it gave users a one-time chance to opt out of sharing app data with Facebook. A WhatsApp spokeswoman told Ars Technica the change was to allow businesses to store WhatsApp chats using Facebook's broader infrastructure.
A WhatsApp spokesman did not clarify why the platform decided to make the change but said it would not affect EU- and UK-based users.
Koum's departure was also surrounded by reports that he had clashed with management over the company's approach to user privacy on WhatsApp.
- India adds 42,625 COVID-19 cases and 562 deaths in a day
- Five things to remember while investing in mutual fund when markets are high
- Lux's latest campaign features power couple Anushka Sharma and Virat Kohli
- Mirzapur season 3 not in top 10 most-awaited Hindi web series as per YouGov’s survey
- Creativeland Asia launches a specialized research division, Crossbow Insights