The “ultimatum” for using WhatsApp has to do with an announcement made by Facebook in October 2020, as pointed out by LABS columnist Rodrigo Ghedin. At that time, the company presented news for the platform’s commercial accounts, those used by companies, from small businesses linked to WhatsApp Business to medium and large companies using APIs. The move was Facebook’s bet to monetize WhatsApp, which has never made a profit since it was bought in 2014 for almost $20 billion.
Thus, end-to-end encryption will remain standard and mandatory in groups and conversations with other individuals but will cease to exist in conversations with business accounts that have hired an external provider – after all, there is a third party reading / storing/ managing the interaction, as Facebook explained.
In the document sent to companies, regulators in Brazil recommend that WhatsApp ceases to restrict access for users who do not adhere to the new policy to the app’s functionalities and that access to the contents of messages and files to be maintained.
When consulted, WhatsApp said in a press statement that “it has spent the past few months providing more information about this update to all users around the world” and that “most of the people notified have accepted the update.”
“However, those who have not yet had a chance to accept the update will not have their accounts deleted or lose functionality on May 15,” added WhatsApp, saying it will continue to send notifications in the coming weeks.
On a separate statement later, the company also stated that it had not been formally notified of the regulators’ recommendation.
WhatsApp relaunched this week, its money transfer service between individuals in Brazil (the second launch market, just after India), after being blocked by the Brazilian Central Bank almost a year ago.
Translated and co-written by LABS