Privacy Policy: Centre urges WhatsApp to reverse change

The Centre sought clarification on WhatsApp’s new privacy policy. The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology has sent a letter to the WhatsApp CEO to clarify its privacy, data transfer and sharing policies.

In a letter to WhatsApp CEO Will Katchart, the Union Ministry of Electronics pointed out that such unilateral changes are unacceptable. India wants the recent change in privacy policy to be reversed. The Centre reminded WhatsApp that government has a sovereign right to protect the interests of Indian citizens and it shall not compromise on that at any cost.

The ministry is additionally seeking clarification from WhatsApp on its data-sharing agreement with Facebook and other commercial firms. The ministry also sought details regarding the data that WhatsApp collects in India, the details of permissions and consents required by the platform, and the nature of profiling of Indian users.

India has the highest number of WhatsApp users in the world. WhatsApp’s recent change in privacy policy has raised concerns about the privacy of people across the country.

WhatsApp recently notified that the service of those who do not approve of the new policy will end this month.

The notification has been extended to May due to widespread criticism and a surge in WhatsApp usage by a large number of users and likely to be implemented from May 16.

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