Europe urges WhatsApp not to exchange user data with Facebook

Facebook WhatsApp Europe

Europe has shown its sudden rejection at WhatsApp practices that have raised "serious concerns" about the right of citizens on privacy.

For now, and waiting to address other more forceful measures, European Data Protection agencies-including Spanish, French, Italian and British have urged the company not to go ahead with the exchange of user data until confirmation that offers sufficient legal safeguards, as they are investigating the privacy policy changes the company announced in August.

European agencies have sent a letter to the CEO and co-founder of WhatsApp, Jan Koum, "in which they express their doubts and concerns about the changes made to the terms of use and privacy policy of the service," according to the Spanish Agency data Protection (AEPD). This body recalls that "WhatsApp updated the terms of service and privacy policy last August, introducing changes to the way it handles the personal information of its users."

Among other issues, the AEPD and their European counterparts question "the validity of the consent given by users, the effectiveness of the mechanisms offered by the company so that they can exercise their rights and the effects of the new policy of data sharing could be also in those who are not users of any service owned by Facebook ".

In addition, the authorities that ensure compliance with the principles and rights set out in European legislation on data protection, ask WhatsApp "to provide all available information, among other referenced specifically to the categories of data collected ( names, phone numbers, email addresses, postal addresses, etc.), the source thereof, and a list of the recipients of the information and the effects of data transfers for both users services and for nonusers. "

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