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Facebook Selects London as a Hub for WhatsApp Payments

Almost one million people tested WhatsApp Pay in India to send money to each other in a simple and secure way

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FILE - The Facebook app icon is shown on an iPhone in New York. VOA

Before it launches WhatsApp Pay in India, Facebook has selected London as base for the global roll-out of its digital payments service on the mobile messaging platform.

According to a report in the Financial Times on Wednesday, WhatsApp would hire nearly 100 people in London to focus on the digital payments service and additional operations staff would be hired in Dublin.

WhatsApp has 1.5 billion users globally, including over 300 million in India.

The new highly-skilled technical engineering staff would build a payments function as well as products that focus on safety and spam on the app, the report said.

“WhatsApp is a truly global service and these teams will help us provide WhatsApp payments and other great features for our users everywhere,” Matthew Idema, WhatsApp’s Chief Operating Officer, was quoted as saying.

whatsapp business app
FILE – The WhatsApp app logo is seen on a smartphone in this picture illustration. VOA

WhatsApp has nearly 400 employees globally.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced on April 24 that the company is actively working on to launch WhatsApp Pay in India.

“We have a test that is running in India for WhatsApp now, we’re hoping to launch in several other countries at some point, but I don’t want to put a timeframe on that here, but it’s something that we’re actively working on,” he said during an earnings call with analysts.

Also Read- 5G Spectrum Trial Begins Next Month in India

Almost one million people tested WhatsApp Pay in India to send money to each other in a simple and secure way.

The company on May 3 told the Supreme Court that it would comply with the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) data localisation norms before launching the full payments service in the country. (IANS)

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Fake Ads on Facebook Spreading Rumours About anti-HIV Drugs

"Facebook and Instagram immediately remove the advertisements outlined above that are harming public health," it added

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Social Media, Facebook, Authenticity, Posts
The social media application, Facebook is displayed on Apple's App Store, July 30, 2019. VOA

Fake ads on Facebook are spreading rumours about the ill-effect of anti-HIV drugs, targeting LGBTQ Facebook and Instagram users and are causing significant harm to public health, a non-profit organization GLAAD has written in a letter to CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

“We are urgently reaching out to Facebook and Instagram regarding factually inaccurate advertisements which suggest negative health effects of Truvada PrEP (Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis).

“We request that Facebook and Instagram remove the advertisements and also publicly address the misinformation that the platforms allowed to spread,” the non-profit organization said in the letter.

Using Facebook’s and Instagram’s targeted advertising programs, various law firms are attempting to recruit gay and bisexual men who use Truvada PrEP as an HIV preventative to join a lawsuit, claiming that the drug has caused harmful side effects in this patient population, specifically bone density and kidney issues.

“This is despite numerous studies underscoring the safety of TDF in HIV-negative PrEP users,” said GLAAD.

Leading public health officials, medical professionals, and dedicated PrEP navigators and outreach coordinators have shared that these advertisements on Facebook and Instagram are being directly cited by at-risk community members expressing heightened fears about taking PrEP.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that when taken daily, PrEP is highly effective for preventing HIV from sex or injection drug use.

“Studies have shown that PrEP reduces the risk of getting HIV from sex by about 99 per cent when taken daily.”

HIV test price in Delhi, HIV in Delhi, STD test in Delhi
HIV is a virus that impairs the body’s immune system badly and eventually takes the patient closer. Pixabay

By allowing these advertisements to persist on their platforms, said the letter, Facebook and Instagram are convincing at-risk individuals to avoid PrEP, invariably leading to avoidable HIV infections.

“You are harming public health.”

Facebook was yet to comment on the letter.

Facebook’s Advertising Policy regarding misinformation in ads states that “Facebook prohibits ads that include claims debunked by third-party fact checkers or, in certain circumstances, claims debunked by organizations with particular expertise.”

Also Read: Zomato in Advanced Talks with Uber to Buy Uber Eats

We are the organizations with “particular expertise,” said GLAAD.

They demanded immediate action to ameliorate the harm which has already been caused to those who may be seeking preventative treatment against HIV.

“Facebook and Instagram immediately remove the advertisements outlined above that are harming public health,” it added. (IANS)