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WhatsApp announces penalty for users who reject new policy

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Facebook-owned messaging service – WhatsApp has announced a penalty for all users who reject its new privacy policy.

According to a FAQ on its website, users who do not accept the new policy have until May 15 to do so or risk losing full access to the application’s functionality.

Such users will not be able to read or send messages from the app,  the company said, but the will be able to receive calls and notifications, however, this will only be possible for a “short time”.

However, in a chat with TechCrunch, the company informed that the “short time” will span a few weeks as policy related to inactive users will apply after May 15.

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Users also stand the risk of being deleted from the app as WhatsApp’s policy for inactive users states that accounts are “generally deleted after 120 days of inactivity.”

Recall that the giant tech company announced the policy update in January as it planned to effect the change on February 8.

The company forced to extend the enforcement by three months after some users raised concerns over a possible transfer of their data to the parent app, Facebook.

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Although WhatsApp has shared some personal information, like phone numbers, with Facebook since 2016, the company was quick to assure users that “Whatsapp can’t read or listen to your personal conversations as they are end-to-end encrypted,” which allows only their recipients can see their contents.

Note that Facebook also has access to WhatsApp user’s IP address (a sequence of numbers attached to every device which connects to the internet, it can also be used to pin down its location) and purchases made via the platform, excluding Europe and the UK, where different privacy laws exist, according to the BBC.

Speaking further, WhatsApp revealed that the update is actually aimed at enabling payments to be made to businesses.

The new terms will allow Facebook and WhatsApp to share payment and transaction data in order to help them better target ads as the social juggernaut broadens its e-commerce offerings and looks to merge its messaging platforms. – TechCrunch

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