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WhatsApp reiterates privacy stand through in-app banner plan

WhatsApp reiterates privacy stand through in-app banner plan
Photo Credit: Reuters
19 Feb, 2021

Facebook owned messaging platform WhatApp, which recently found itself under fire for its privacy policy update, is taking another shot at reassuring users. 

The platform has already pushed its privacy policy update from February 8 to May 15. 

In late January, WhatsApp used the status feature on its application to address the confusion around data sharing with Facebook. In the coming weeks, the platform will place a banner on the top of the chat screen that will expand into two full screen text graphics to showcase the updates.

Credit: WhatsApp

WhatsApp, through a blog post on Thursday, said that it will share updated plans, which users can read through and learn how business and private messages are handled with their different privacy standards.

 Read: Supreme Court issues notice to WhatsApp over privacy policy 

According to the company, it spent the last few weeks reviewing feedback from users. It reiterated that the platform cannot read or listen to personal conversations, keep logs of who is being messaged or share contact lists with Facebook. 

In its latest update to its terms of use and privacy policy WhatsApp said that talking to businesses on the platform is completely optional and the user can decide to block or remove the business from the contact list.

Facebook might come into the picture during instances where businesses need to respond to users quickly, such as an airline responding to many users at a given time, according to the messaging platform.

“These businesses may use Facebook as a technology provider to manage some of the responses on their behalf,” WhatsApp said.

“We will clearly label chats to make you aware when that happens,” it added.

The company said that while personal messages are end-to-end encrypted, messages and the data in business chats can be used for commercial purposes such as ad targeting on Facebook, while also being stored on Facebook’s servers.

Read: WhatsApp privacy policy update: here’s what’s up

The row over WhatApp’s privacy policy update has benefitted  rival messaging applications such as Telegram and Signal, which have reportedly noticed a spurt of new users. Telegram released a new feature recently to allow users to import WhatsApp’s chat history onto its platform.