WHATSAPP will force its users to share their private data, including phone numbers, with its parent company Facebook next month.
The update will come in the form of an in-app notification, which must be agreed to prior to the closing date. WhatsApp says the new policy is designed to “offer integrations across the Facebook Company Products”, which includes Instagram and Messenger.
Other than phone numbers, the app will now track users’ signal strength, language, time zone, IP address, and phone battery level.
Privacy International tweeted the move is likely to push users onto other platforms, with many users saying that they planned to move to rival messaging apps such as Telegram. Ever since the app was bought by Facebook in 2014 for $19 billion, it has faced controversy for the way it handles users’ data.
The platform’s co-founder Jan Koum resigned from his role as WhatsApp chief executive in 2018 due to Facebook’s decision to monetise personal data in the app.
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