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Saudi Arabia To Revoke Ban On Skype and WhatsApp Calls

Saudi arabia to remove ban on telecommunication like skype and whatsapp calls, but will keep monitoring it

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Saudi Arabia
source: Pixabay

Saudi Arabia, September 22, 2017: Saudi Arabian government as part of economic reforms is to lift the ban on calls through networking apps Skype and WhatsApp, but will keep an eye on all the calls as stated by the government spokesperson.

The government in order to transform its economy that aids in enlargement of the business and broaden the economy to the low price of oil plans to provide access to other video and audio call services including Facebook messenger and Viber that fulfills the necessities of the regulation of the authorities.

The spokesperson of telecoms regulator of Communications and Information Technology Commission (CITC), Adel Abu Hameed through, Arabiya TV said the idea behind imposing the regulation is to keep away the content that violated the laws of the region and also to keep intact the personal information of the user.

He also added that the apps, both local and global cannot be used in any way without being censored by CITC or monitoring.

The government although have not made it clear as to how they are going to undertake this regulation on end-to-end encryption apps like WhatsApp which do not allow anyone to read the customers’ messages event after the enforcement of the law.

Saudi Arabia banned the widely used services for internet communication from 2013 onwards stating them to be used by the activists against for the norms of the government. The government still keep a check on the restricted content such as gambling sites, pornography, and extremist material.

At the end of May 2017, Saudi Arabia blocked the access to the website of Al Jazeera after the country put an end to all the Qatar links over supporting terrorism and having ties with Iran.

ALSO READSaudi communication and IT authority blocked 68 Percent of 900,000 violated Internet Links in 2016.

However, it is believed that reversing the Saudi Arabian ban can adversely affect the three main telecom operators – Saudi Telecom Co (STC), Etihad Etisalat (Mobily) and Zain Saudi of Saudi Arabia, which has been generating major revenue from international calls.

The Gulf Arab neighbours have also raised concerned about the security in the usage of internet communications.

Censorship over internet increased in Saudi Arabia after ‘Arab Spring’ uprising in 2011.The authorities also claim that they have been using the IP addresses to block around 400,000 websites that could harm the public interest.

– prepared by Abhishek Biswas of NewsGram Twitter: @Writing_desire

 

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WhatsApp to Take Legal Action Against Businesses Engaged in Abusing Bulk Messaging

"We will continue to provide capabilities to help businesses communicate with their customers," said WhatsApp

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WhatsApp
WhatsApp on a smartphone device. Pixabay

WhatsApp will take legal action against businesses engaged in or assisting others in abusing automated or bulk messaging on its platform.

The company has built two tools — the WhatsApp Business app and the WhatsApp Business API — to help companies manage customer interactions.

The company said that its products are not intended for bulk or automated messaging, both of which have always been a violation of its terms of service.

“WhatsApp will take legal action against those we determine are engaged in or assisting others in abuse that violates our terms of service, such as automated or bulk messaging, or non-personal use, even if that determination is based on information solely available to us off our platform,” the Facebook-owned platform said in a statement.

For example, off-platform information includes public claims from companies about their ability to use WhatsApp in ways that violate its terms.

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

“This serves as notice that we will take legal action against companies for which we only have off-platform evidence of abuse if that abuse continues beyond December 7, 2019, or if those companies are linked to on-platform evidence of abuse before that date,” said WhatsApp.

The platform, on an average, bans over two million accounts per month for bulk or automated behaviour and over 75 per cent of those accounts did not have any recent user reports.

An account that registered five minutes before attempting to send 100 messages in 15 seconds is almost certain to be engaged in abuse, as is an account that attempts to quickly create dozens of groups or add thousands of users to a series of existing groups.

Also Read: Apple Brings iOS, iPadOS 13.3 with a Host of Bug Fixes and Improvements

“Using the on-platform information available within WhatsApp, we’ve found and stopped millions of abusive accounts from operating on our service,” it said.

In addition to technological enforcement, said WhatsApp, it also takes legal action against individuals or companies that it links to on-platform evidence of such abuse.

“We will continue to provide capabilities to help businesses communicate with their customers,” said WhatsApp. (IANS)