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Facebook bound to honor WhatsApp users' privacy pledge

The policy on WhatsApp users' private data usage gained another title this week. In a note, the director of the consumer protection division of Federal Trade CommissionJessica Rich demands that the Facebook holds promise to use WhatsApp user data correctly. In addition, the regulator claims to keep an eye on corporate actions to ensure that the social network and instant messaging application honor what was previously agreed. But will Mark Zuckerberg resist temptation?

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Will Facebook keep its promise not to poke around at WhatsApp users? / Facebook / AndroidPIT

Facebook announced the acquisition of WhatsApp in February, and after that, the messenger's more than 450 million users began to question whether Facebook would misuse its data. At the time, many promises were made and, to keep up with this standing agreement, the FTC is on the heels of both companies, as it receives many complaints regarding the abuse of the Zuckerberg company.

Thus, to make agency control more assertive, the FTC now comes to the forefront with repeated warnings about fulfilling what was promised to make Facebook's purchase of WhatsApp possible. In the letter, the position of the consumer protection division is very clear:

WhatsApp has made several promises about the nature of data it collects, saves and shares. All of them are more restrictive than those used by Facebook. We want to make it clear that it is important that, regardless of the acquisition, WhatsApp keeps honoring its promises to consumers.

In the statement it is still possible to find a reference to a WhatsApp blog post right after the sale of the company where it was said that "nothing" will change for users and also quotes Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg saying "We are not going to change the WhatsApp plans and how it uses user data ".

The attitude of the FTC is valid, but this letter unfortunately does not mean giving Facebook a sufficient strategy, which bought WhatsApp with the clear objective of gaining access to user data and presumably to display Facebook advertising to them.

But one thing for sure, it won't be as easy for Zuckerberg's team to change WhatsApp rules as it was with Instagram. According to Jessica Rich, Facebook may make changes to WhatsApp's privacy policies, but Facebook must obtain "affirmative consent" before doing so. The agency also recommends that Facebook provide WhatsApp users with a mechanism for stopping and canceling certain services (opt out) if society changes its policies.

You can check the full letter by clicking here.

What do you think of the attitude of the FTC? Will Facebook respect what it promised earlier? Let us know your opinion of the comments below.

. (tagsToTranslate) Facebook (t) privacy (t) WhatsApp (t) FTC (t) Android users