comscore WhatsApp gets another warning: IT ministry tells, withdraw new privacy policy or face action
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WhatsApp gets another warning: IT ministry tells, withdraw new privacy policy or face action

WhatsApp Privacy Policy Latest Update: The Indian government warns WhatsApp to withdraw the new privacy policy that came into effect on May 15.

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WhatsApp has been a part of major controversy in India since the start of 2021. The key reason behind this is its new privacy policy that came into effect on May 15. Currently, WhatsApp is sending pop-up notifications to users to accept the policy. Also Read - WhatsApp working on a new message reactions feature for iOS users: How it works

Earlier in January, WhatsApp announced its new privacy policy that mainly highlighted the kind of data it collects from users and the ones that are shared with the parent company Facebook. Ever since, the Indian government has been against the new policy and warned the messaging platform to withdraw it. Also Read - 5 interesting upcoming WhatsApp features you must wait for

The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (Meity) once again has asked the company to withdraw the policy. WhatsApp has been given seven days to respond back with their plan. Also Read - Happy Dusshera 2021 messages, images, stickers, quotes: How to create, send Happy Vijayadashami greetings via WhatsApp

IT Ministry to WhatsApp: Withdraw new policy

The IT ministry said in an official statement, “The changes to the privacy policy and the manner of introducing these changes including in FAQ (frequently asked questions) undermines the sacrosanct values of informational privacy, data security and user choice for Indian users and harms the rights and interests of Indian citizens.”

As per several media reports, a senior IT minister said, “We have a sovereign responsibility to protect the rights and interests of Indian citizens. The government will consider various options available under the law.” The minister, however, didn’t confirm what are the actions that the government could take if WhatsApp doesn’t withdraw the new policy.

WhatsApp said it continued to engage with the government of India and that the policy update did not impact the privacy of personal messages for any user in the country. “No accounts were deleted on May 15 because of this update and no one in India lost functionality of WhatsApp either. We will follow up with reminders to people over the next several weeks,” a WhatsApp spokesperson said.

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The new notice  issued on Tuesday reiterated the “discriminatory” treatment towards Indian WhatsApp users when compared to those in Europe. “As you are doubtlessly aware, many Indian citizens depend on WhatsApp to communicate in everyday life. It is not just problematic, but also irresponsible, for WhatsApp to leverage this position to impose unfair terms and conditions on Indian users, particularly those that discriminate against Indian users vis-à-vis users in Europe,” the new notice read.

Time and again WhatsApp has said that the platform is end-to-end encrypted and can never see or store personal conversations or information of users.

The new privacy policy came into effect on May 15. WhatsApp said, it will not delete any account but eventually if the new policy is not accepted, several features will be withdrawn. It explained, accounts that don’t accept the policy will eventually not able to make calls or even send messages. This means, if you want to continue using WhatsApp you will eventually need to accept the policy.

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  • Published Date: May 20, 2021 8:23 AM IST
  • Updated Date: May 20, 2021 8:31 AM IST



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