The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has reportedly warned Facebook and WhatsApp against violating consumers’ privacy. The warning comes as Facebook successfully cleared a hurdle in its purchase of WhatsApp for 19 billion dollars.
According to CNET, the organization sent a sharply worded letter to Facebook Chief Privacy Officer Erin Egan and WhatsApp General Counsel Anne Hoge reminding both companies that they will need to abide by the privacy promises they’ve made to consumers or face legal consequences. Bureau of Consumer Protection Director Jessica Rich wrote that the FTC want to make clear that, regardless of the acquisition, WhatsApp must continue to honor these promises to consumers. She added that if the acquisition is completed and WhatsApp fails to honor these promises, both companies could be in violation of Section 5 of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Act and, potentially, the FTC’s order against Facebook.
Meanwhile, in response, a Facebook spokeswoman said that the social network was pleased the FTC has completed its review and cleared the company’s acquisition of WhatsApp, adding that both companies will continue to comply with all applicable laws after the transaction closes.