Technology

Argentina's government determined WhatsApp to postpone for 180 days new privacy policy

The concern is because Facebook could allow companies to outsource the storage and management of messages exchanged with customers to external providers

Request to update WhatsApp's privacy policy on the smartphone screen in Brazil
Request to update WhatsApp's privacy policy on the smartphone screen in Brazil, the second largest app market in the world. Photo: Rodrigo Ghedin
  • By the new privacy policy, Facebook could allow companies to outsource the storage and management of messages exchanged with customers to external providers, allowing FB itself also to provide such services and, therefore, read the messages;
  • WhatsApp said it will not ban any accounts in Brazil and that users in the country won’t lose access to the app’s features in the 90 days after the new privacy policy goes into effect.

Argentina‘s Trade Secretariat (Secretaría de Comercio de la Nación) prohibited WhatsApp to put in effect its new privacy policy for 180 days, claiming that it needs further investigation over violations of user’s data rights, reported Clarín. Argentina‘s regulator is concerned about WhatsApp‘s potential sharing users’ information with Facebook.

By the new privacy policy, Facebook could allow companies to outsource the storage and management of messages exchanged with customers to external providers, allowing FB itself also to provide such services and, therefore, read the messages.

READ ALSO: Facebook relaunches WhatsApp money transfers in Brazil

WhatsApp said it will not ban any accounts in Brazil and that users won’t lose access to the app’s features in the 90 days after the new privacy policy goes into effect.

The company met this week with Brazil‘s Administrative Council for Economic Defense, the Federal Public Ministry, the National Data Protection Authority, and the National Consumer Secretariat. It was agreed that in this period of 90 days (half of what Argentina‘s government determined) the regulatory institutions will make new analyses and questionings to Facebook and WhatsApp. Yet, in Brazil, the new privacy policy is already effective since May 15th.

WhatsApp said the privacy update does not expand WhatsApp’s ability to share data with Facebook and does not impact how people communicate privately with their friends and family. “The policy changes are related to optional conversations with companies and they were designed to increase the transparency of these conversations on WhatsApp.”

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