EU: WhatsApp agrees to be more transparent about policy changes

The EU Commission announced that after the dialogue between member state consumer institutions and WhatsApp, the application agreed to better inform users and respect users’ preferences regarding contract updates.

Pointing out that WhatsApp will make it easier for users to refuse updates if they do not accept them, the company will also clearly inform users in case of an update refusal that access to the service will end.

In the statement, it was noted that WhatsApp will not share users’ personal data with other Meta companies or third parties, including Facebook, for advertising or other purposes.


About the process

The EU Commission and consumer protection authorities of EU countries sent a warning letter to WhatsApp last year about the use of users’ personal data.

In the letter sent to WhatsApp, the company was asked to clarify the changes it made to its terms of service and privacy policy in 2021.

The EU had requested that WhatsApp’s changes be guaranteed to comply with the Union’s consumer protection law.

WhatsApp, owned by Facebook, introduced new “user terms of service and privacy policy” in many countries on January 4, 2021. It was announced that those who do not accept the agreement, which goes to all users with notifications, will not be able to use the application as of February 8, 2021.

Many articles in the contract caused reactions. The first of these was the obligation of users to share their personal data with Facebook. It was stated that the contract, which the WhatsApp application “forces to accept” its users, is not valid in Europe. The application offered a different service contract for its users in EU countries.

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