Tuesday January 21, 2020
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Irish Watchdog Warns Facebook Integration with WhatsApp

WhatsApp's end-to-end encryption -- the hallmark of users' security -- may also go for a toss if Facebook integrates the popular mobile messaging platform with not-that-secure Instagram and Messenger

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Facebook, data, vietnam
This photo shows a Facebook app icon on a smartphone in New York. VOA

The Irish Data Protection Commission (DPC) has warned Facebook over its planned integration of its chat services — WhatsApp, Messenger and photo-sharing app Instagram, asking the social media giant to provide it with an “urgent briefing” on the proposals.

In a statement, the Dublin-headquartered Irish watchdog said it understood the plan was at a “very early conceptual stage”.

“While we understand that Facebook’s proposal to integrate the Facebook, WhatsApp and Instagram platforms is at a very early conceptual stage of development, the Irish DPC has asked Facebook Ireland for an urgent briefing on what is being proposed,” the watchdog said in a statement late on Monday.

“The Irish DPC will be very closely scrutinising Facebook’s plans as they develop, particularly insofar as they involve the sharing and merging of personal data between different Facebook companies,” it added.

The New York Times reported on January 25 that all of the three Facebook apps will support end-to-end encryption but the company was yet to provide a timeline for when this will happen.

Messenger and Instagram would continue to operate as stand-alone apps.

WhatsApp
WhatsApp on a smartphone device.

According to the Irish watchdog, “previous proposals to share data between Facebook companies have given rise to significant data protection concerns and the Irish DPC will be seeking early assurances that all such concerns will be fully taken into account by Facebook in further developing this proposal”.

“It must be emphasised that ultimately the proposed integration can only occur in the EU if it is capable of meeting all of the requirements of the GDPR,” the statement read.

The move could let the social networking giant tout higher user engagement to advertisers, thus, ramping up its advertising division at a time when overall growth has slowed down.

Also Read- After Facebook, Google Disables App That Collects Users’ Data: Report

Facebook has the most users of any other social media platform, and by combining its assets this way, the company could more directly compete with Apple’s iMessage and Google’s messaging services, according to The Verge.

WhatsApp’s end-to-end encryption — the hallmark of users’ security — may also go for a toss if Facebook integrates the popular mobile messaging platform with not-that-secure Instagram and Messenger. (IANS)

  • Arthur Bizdikian

    What is the main issue if all of Facebooks companies share and merge data amongst one another ? They already indirectly do that

Next Story

Twitterati Report Server, Media Transfer Issues on WhatsApp

Posting a torn photo of WhatsApp logo, a person tweeted "Whatsapp Media Sharing is down from past 45 minutes Oh my god! Unable to send any photos or videos. Are you facing it too? If yes which country are you from?"

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facebook, WhatsApp, stories, feature
Silhouettes of mobile users are seen next to logos of social media apps Signal, Whatsapp and Telegram projected on a screen in this picture illustration. VOA

Looks like Facebook’s popularly owned online messaging app WhatsApp is currently experiencing issues in some regions around the world.

#whatsappdown trended on twitter with 8,246 Tweets as a Alarge number of reports from users stated that WhatsApp is currently down or not working.

Many WhatsApp users taking to Twitter complained about facing an issue with sending & receiving messages.

Taking to the social networking app, Twitter a user posted “Facing issues while sending media files, from Andhra Pradesh.”

whatsapp, paytm, UPI-based Pay service
FILE – The WhatsApp app logo is seen on a smartphone in this picture illustration. VOA

Another user, asking people about the WhatsApp being down said “Is it just me or WhatsApp is Temporarily down, cause my photos, GIFs, and voice note fail to deliver. Any other person with this issue? #whatsappdown”

“RIP WhatsApp. Impossible mandate file multimedia #whatsappdown,” wrote a user.

Also Read: Hacker Leaks Passwords for Over 5 Lakh Servers, IoT Devices

Sharing the photo of Whatsapp logo, a user said “I am facing difficulty for WhatsApp media sharing, I can’t send even a voice message media sharing WhatsApp is down now are you facing this problem #whatsappdown.”

Posting a torn photo of WhatsApp logo, a person tweeted “Whatsapp Media Sharing is down from past 45 minutes Oh my god! Unable to send any photos or videos. Are you facing it too? If yes which country are you from?” (IANS)