WhatsApp’s new privacy policy may encroach privacy of the users

On Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning there was an in-app notification on WhatsApp which informed the users about the new platform policies. “WhatsApp is updating its terms and privacy policy,” the new WhatsApp notification read, sent to both Android as well as iOS users. The policies largely focus on how user data is collected and processed by WhatsApp but adds on to what is already known.

In order to continue using their Whatsapp account the users neend to accept all those terms and conditions and if someone rejects it they won’t be able to use it further. The new privacy policy will come into effect from February 8,2021.

“We collect device and connection-specific information when you install, access, or use our Services. This includes information such as hardware model, operating system information, battery level, signal strength, app version, browser information, mobile network, connection information (including phone number, mobile operator or ISP), language and time zone, IP address, device operations information, and identifiers,” WhatsApp said.

Clarity on Data Collection:

WhatsApp collects data for analytics and the same was informed to the users. It gives access about the user activity, time spent on WhatsApp, service setting etc.

This also includes information about when you registered to use our Services; the features you use like our messaging, calling, status, groups (including group name, group picture, group description), payments or business features; profile photo, “about” information; whether you are online, when you last used our services (your “last seen”); and when you last updated your “about” information, WhatsApp notified. In simple words, this gives WhatsApp access to most of your information.

Transaction and Payments Data:

WhatsApp has now made available a separate option for ‘Transaction And Payments’. One who makes financial transactions using this facility then some of the additional information will be collected about them.

This may also include payment account and transaction information. Payment account and transaction information include information needed to complete the transaction.

WhatsApp has now for the first time hinted about the larger Facebook ecosystem which Mark Zuckerberg was talking about back in October last year. The Facebook CEO had suggested a “connected interoperable system” where WhatsApp, Instagram and Messenger app could be used interchangeably.