Even as Facebook is battling a legal case in India over changing WhatsApp s policies, the company has come under the radar of European Commission as well for allegedly misleading the regulator. The European Commission has slapped a fine of $122 million. The latest penalty comes as part of the ongoing tussle between the European regulators and the social networking giant. Also Read - WhatsApp beta for iOS reveals changes, here's what users might getAlso Read - How to temporarily deactivate/permanently delete WhatsApp account
According to reports, Facebook had told the commission three years ago that it was unable to match Facebook user profiles with WhatsApp s. “Today’s decision sends a clear signal to companies that they must comply with all aspects of EU merger rules, including the obligation to provide correct information,” Margrethe Vestager, the EU’s top antitrust official is quoted as saying. Also Read - WhatsApp COVID-19 relief efforts: How you can get resources during the pandemic
Facebook had acquired WhatsApp for $19 billion. Facebook-owned WhatsApp is one of the biggest messaging platforms in the world with over 1 billion active users. The messaging platform has a huge presence in emerging markets like India. ALSO READ: Here s why Facebook bought WhatsApp for $19 billion
Responding to European Commission s decision, Facebook said, We’ve acted in good faith since our very first interactions with the Commission and we’ve sought to provide accurate information at every turn. The errors we made in our 2014 filings were not intentional and the Commission has confirmed that they did not impact the outcome of the merger review. ALSO READ: WhatsApp fined $3 million over Facebook data sharing in Italy
While the European regulator focused on Facebook s statement, the social networking giant is involved in a legal tussle in India over updating WhatsApp s policies that allow the company to share some user data with businesses. Supreme Court of India made a scathing remark on Facebook s move stating, “What you share is mobile number, area and identity of user which was confined to WhatsApp. The question is whether users’ identity could be shared with others for commercial exploitation. What is bothering us is that now you are sharing information.