comscore WhatsApp co-founder Brian Acton says Facebook questioned encryption, forcing him to leave
News

WhatsApp co-founder Brian Acton says Facebook questioned encryption, forcing him to leave

All is not well between Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and co-founders of platforms like Instagram and WhatsApp.

  • Published: September 27, 2018 11:12 AM IST
brian-acton

image source: mint


Instagram co-founders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger announced early this week that they are leaving the company they co-founded nearly eight years ago. The duo announced that they are leaving Facebook, which bought the photo-sharing platform for around $1 billion six years ago. The exit comes just months after WhatsApp co-founder Jan Koum decided to leave Facebook. Also Read - WhatsApp COVID-19 relief efforts: How you can get resources during the pandemic

Also Read - Good news! Jio users can now check COVID-19 vaccine slots on WhatsApp - here's how

Since the official confirmation from Systrom, there have been multiple reports detailing the reason for their exit. According to New York Times, Instagram co-founders decided to leave Facebook (thus Instagram) after growing “disagreements over tweaks to their product, staffing changes and how over the last year [Mark] Zuckerberg asserted more control over their business.” The reason does not really seem new and it is precisely the reason why Koum decided to leave WhatsApp. Also Read - Facebook smartwatch to feature cameras alongside fitness functions: Yes, detachable cameras!

WhatsApp was acquired by Facebook more than four years ago for a record $19 billion. Some reports claim that Facebook paid as much as $22 billion after regulatory clearances for the deal. Ten months ago, Acton left Facebook to focus on a nonprofit and his exit did not really gather as much attention as that of Koum or Instagram co-founders. In an exclusive interview with Forbes, Acton reveals why he left Facebook and his support for the ongoing #DeleteFacebook movement.

Since his exit, Acton has been the most vocal supporter of stronger encryption for services such as WhatsApp. He claims the decision to leave Facebook claim after its leaders, CEO Mark Zuckerberg and COO Sheryl Sandberg, began questioning the encryption algorithm he built, in order to monetize the messaging platform.

While Koum left after all of his stocks vested and made him a young billionaire, Acton left even before his final portion of stock grants vested. “It was like, okay, well, you want to do these things I don’t want to do. It’s better if I get out of your way. And I did,” Acton explains the reason behind him leaving Facebook. His decision to leave Facebook before the final tranche of stocks vested is estimated to have cost him around $850 million.

In the interview, Acton also reveals how he proposed a metered monetization model and Sheryl Sandberg shot down the idea. He claims that Facebook wanted to show targeted ads to WhatsApp users, which Acton clearly opposed. He believes “Facebook isn’t the bad guy” and sees them more as a business people.

“At the end of the day, I sold my company. I sold my users’ privacy to a larger benefit. I made a choice and a compromise. And I live with that every day,” Acton told Forbes.

David Marcus, former head of messaging products and current lead of blockchain at Facebook, refuted Acton’s claims and wrote in a Facebook post that, “Mark personally shields founders from what typically frustrates them in larger companies, giving them unprecedented autonomy.” “I witnessed Mark defending it a number of internal meetings where there was push back never for advertising or data collection reasons but for concerns about safety and even in Board Meetings. Mark s view was that WhatsApp was a private messaging app, and encryption helped ensure that people s messages were truly private,” he added.

Watch: Apple iPhone Xs, iPhone Xs Max and iPhone Xr First Look

Facebook is currently the most widely scrutinized public company in the world. Since it confirmed Russian interference on its platform to manipulate US Presidential elections in 2016, it is facing increased threat of regulation around the world. Recently, it was forced to change its privacy policy in order to incorporate Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

However, the accounts of Instagram and WhatsApp co-founders raises questions around Facebook’s practice, especially one around pushing more advertisements and opening the platform to businesses. The critics question if such a practice would loosen the security aspect of these platforms. It is not clear whether Zuckerberg himself will comment on these allegations but for now, Facebook remains the undisputed king of social media platforms.

For the latest tech news across the world, latest PC and Mobile games, tips & tricks, top-notch gadget reviews of most exciting releases follow BGR India’s Facebook, Twitter, subscribe our YouTube Channel. Also follow us on  Facebook Messenger for latest updates.
  • Published Date: September 27, 2018 11:12 AM IST



new arrivals in india

OnePlus Nord CE 5G
OnePlus Nord CE 5G

22,999

iQOO Z3
iQOO Z3

19,990

Realme C25s
Realme C25s

9,999

Poco M3 Pro 5G
Poco M3 Pro 5G

13,999

Realme X7 Max 5G
Realme X7 Max 5G

26,999

Oppo F19
Oppo F19

18,990

Motorola Moto G40 Fusion
Motorola Moto G40 Fusion

13,999

POCO M2 Reloaded
POCO M2 Reloaded

9,499

OPPO A74 5G
OPPO A74 5G

17,990

Oppo A53s 5G
Oppo A53s 5G

14,990

Vivo V21 5G
Vivo V21 5G

29,990

Realme C25
Realme C25

9,499

Realme C21
Realme C21

7,999

Realme C20
Realme C20

6,799

Motorola Moto G60
Motorola Moto G60

17,999

iQOO 7
iQOO 7

31,990

Samsung Galaxy M42 5G
Samsung Galaxy M42 5G

21,999

Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra
Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra

69,999

Xiaomi Mi 11X Pro 5G
Xiaomi Mi 11X Pro 5G

39,999

Xiaomi Mi 11X
Xiaomi Mi 11X

29,999

Realme 8 5G
Realme 8 5G

13,999

Samsung Galaxy F02s
Samsung Galaxy F02s

8,999

Samsung Galaxy F12
Samsung Galaxy F12

10,999

POCO X3 Pro
POCO X3 Pro

18,999

Realme 8 Pro
Realme 8 Pro

17,999

Realme 8
Realme 8

14,999

Vivo X60 Pro Plus
Vivo X60 Pro Plus

69,990

Vivo X60 Pro
Vivo X60 Pro

49,990

Vivo X60
Vivo X60

37,990

OnePlus 9 Pro 5G
OnePlus 9 Pro 5G

64,999

OnePlus 9R 5G
OnePlus 9R 5G

39,999

OnePlus 9 5G
OnePlus 9 5G

49,999

Samsung Galaxy A72
Samsung Galaxy A72

34,999

Samsung Galaxy A52
Samsung Galaxy A52

26,499

Micromax In 1
Micromax In 1

10,499

Asus ROG Phone 5
Asus ROG Phone 5

49,999

Samsung Galaxy M12
Samsung Galaxy M12

10,999

Motorola Moto G30
Motorola Moto G30

10,999

Motorola Moto G10 Power
Motorola Moto G10 Power

9,999

Oppo F19 Pro Plus 5G
Oppo F19 Pro Plus 5G

25,990

Oppo F19 Pro
Oppo F19 Pro

21,490

Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro Max
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro Max

18,999

Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro

15,999

Xiaomi Redmi Note 10
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10

11,999

Realme Narzo 30A
Realme Narzo 30A

8,999

Realme Narzo 30 Pro
Realme Narzo 30 Pro

16,999

Infinix Smart 5
Infinix Smart 5

7,199

Samsung Galaxy F62
Samsung Galaxy F62

23,999

Samsung Galaxy A12
Samsung Galaxy A12

12,999

Nokia 5.4
Nokia 5.4

13,999

Nokia 3.4
Nokia 3.4

11,999

Realme X7 Pro 5G
Realme X7 Pro 5G

29,999

Realme X7
Realme X7

19,999

Vivo Y31
Vivo Y31

16,490

Oppo Reno5 Pro 5G
Oppo Reno5 Pro 5G

35,990

Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G
Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G

1,05,999

Samsung Galaxy S21 Plus 5G
Samsung Galaxy S21 Plus 5G

81,999

Samsung Galaxy S21 5G
Samsung Galaxy S21 5G

69,999

Vivo Y12s
Vivo Y12s

9,990

Vivo Y51A
Vivo Y51A

17,990

Samsung Galaxy M02s
Samsung Galaxy M02s

8,999

Xiaomi Mi 10i
Xiaomi Mi 10i

21,999

Oppo A15s
Oppo A15s

11,490

Tecno Spark 6 Go
Tecno Spark 6 Go

8,499

Vivo V20 2021
Vivo V20 2021

24,990

Vivo Y20A
Vivo Y20A

11,490

Xiaomi Redmi 9 Power
Xiaomi Redmi 9 Power

11,999

Motorola Moto G9 Power
Motorola Moto G9 Power

11,999

Motorola Moto G 5G
Motorola Moto G 5G

20,999

Vivo V20 Pro
Vivo V20 Pro

29,990

Xiaomi Mi 10T
Xiaomi Mi 10T

35,999

Xiaomi Redmi 9i
Xiaomi Redmi 9i

8,299

Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro
Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro

39,999

Infinix Hot 10
Infinix Hot 10

9,999

Vivo V20 SE
Vivo V20 SE

20,990

Vivo V20
Vivo V20

24,990

Micromax In 1b
Micromax In 1b

6,999

Micromax In Note 1
Micromax In Note 1

10,999

OnePlus 8T
OnePlus 8T

42,999

Samsung Galaxy F41
Samsung Galaxy F41

15,499

Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max
Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max

1,29,900

Apple iPhone 12 Pro
Apple iPhone 12 Pro

1,19,900

Apple iPhone 12 Mini
Apple iPhone 12 Mini

69,900

Apple iPhone 12
Apple iPhone 12

79,900

Poco X3
Poco X3

16,999

Realme Narzo 20A
Realme Narzo 20A

8,499

Realme Narzo 20
Realme Narzo 20

10,499

Realme Narzo 20 Pro
Realme Narzo 20 Pro

13,999

Oppo F17
Oppo F17

16,990

Samsung Galaxy M51
Samsung Galaxy M51

22,999

Poco M2
Poco M2

10,999

Oppo F17 Pro
Oppo F17 Pro

22,990

Realme 7 Pro
Realme 7 Pro

19,999

Realme 7
Realme 7

14,999

Xiaomi Redmi 9A
Xiaomi Redmi 9A

6,799

Vivo Y20
Vivo Y20

12,990

Xiaomi Redmi 9
Xiaomi Redmi 9

8,999

Nokia 5.3
Nokia 5.3

13,999

Best Sellers