Thu, 20 Jan 2022

WhatsApp releases privacy update to comply with Irish ruling

Robert Besser
24 Nov 2021, 20:14 GMT+10

DUBLIN, Ireland: After being handed a record fine of $267 million by Irish regulators in September for breaching strict EU data privacy rules, WhatsApp is adding more details to its privacy policy and flagging related information for European users.

WhatsApp is owned by Facebook, recently renamed Meta Platforms.

Its privacy policy will offer more information on Monday regarding the data it collects and uses, and it will explain, in more detail, how it protects data shared for its international service.

With the update, users in Europe will view a banner notification that will take them to the new information.

Despite stressing that it disagreed with the decision of Ireland's Data Privacy Commission, the company said it had to comply by updating its policy while it is appealing.

The update does not affect users, who do not have to take any further action, or the handing of their data.

Because WhatsApp's regional headquarters is in Dublin, the Commission is the lead privacy regulator under European Union rules.

Earlier this year, WhatsApp was embroiled in a separate privacy controversy when another update to its privacy policy went wrong, raising concerns that users were being forced to agree to share more of their data with Facebook.

That update sparked a backlash from users who switched to rival services, such as Telegram and Signal, as well as an investigation by Turkey's competition watchdog, a temporary German ban on gathering data, and a complaint by EU consumer groups.

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