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WhatsApp to display banner in chats explaining updated privacy policy

WhatsApp's updated terms and privacy policy goes into effect on May 15. Here's how it plans to explain to users about the changes.

FILE PHOTO: The WhatsApp messaging application is seen on a phone screen August 3, 2017. REUTERS/Thomas White/File Photo
FILE PHOTO: The WhatsApp messaging application is seen on a phone screen August 3, 2017. REUTERS/Thomas White/File Photo (REUTERS)

WhatsApp pushed its change in Terms of Service from February 8 to May 15 following backlash from users globally. The Facebook-owned company terms this backlash as “misinformation”, and that it hasn’t properly explained what these changes mean. WhatsApp has now published a blog detailing how it will inform users about the policy change.

WhatsApp will soon start displaying a banner with information to its new terms and privacy policy.
WhatsApp will soon start displaying a banner with information to its new terms and privacy policy. (WhatsApp)

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WhatsApp explained again how its privacy policy changes are primarily for businesses, and personal chats will not be affected. “Bigger businesses, like an airline or retailer, might hear from thousands of customers at a time - asking for information on a flight, or trying to track their order. To make sure they can respond quickly, these businesses may use Facebook as a technology provider to manage some of the responses on their behalf. We will clearly label chats to make you aware when that happens,” WhatsApp said.

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WhatsApp in its blog also took a dig at rival apps who have been seeing spike in users after the backlash. “We’ve seen some of our competitors try to get away with claiming they can’t see people’s messages - if an app doesn’t offer end-to-end encryption by default that means they can read your messages,” WhatsApp said in its blog.

Telegram and Signal are the most popular WhatsApp alternatives. Both are privacy-focused apps, and have been found to collect less user information and data when compared to WhatsApp.

WhatsApp’s new privacy policy and ToS come into effect on May 15 before which users will have to accept the terms to continue using the app.

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