French Privacy Regulator Gives WhatsApp One Month to Stop Data Sharing With Facebook

Stephanie Bodoni, reporting for Bloomberg:

France’s data protection authority CNIL gave a sharp warning to WhatsApp by issuing a formal notice, criticizing it for “insufficiently” cooperating. The decision comes a year after European Union privacy authorities said they had “serious concerns” about the sharing of WhatsApp user data for purposes that weren’t included in the terms of service and privacy policy when people signed up to the service. […]

The merging of WhatsApp’s data with Facebook was a first step by Facebook last year toward monetizing the platform since the social network’s Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg bought the company for about $22 billion in 2014. The EU’s 28 privacy chiefs were critical from the start and as part of their probes across the bloc, in a letter to WhatsApp co-founder Jan Koum in October that stressed their concerns.

The data transfers from WhatsApp to Facebook happen in part without the users’ consent, nor the legitimate interest of WhatsApp, CNIL said.

Remember when WhatsApp CEO Jan Koum adamantly reassured their users that the Facebook acquisition would not change anything? Good times.

Tuesday, 19 December 2017