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WhatsApp asked not to share data with Facebook

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Whatsapp and Telegram
A WhatsApp logo is seen behind a smartphone, Feb. 20, 2014. Authorities in Afghanistan are temporarily blocking WhatsApp and Telegram social media services in the country. VOA
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France’s privacy watchdog has issued a formal notice to WhatsApp, asking the popular mobile messaging app to stop sharing user data with the parent company Facebook within a month. The Chair of the National Data Protection Commission (CNIL) had asked WhatsApp to provide a sample of the French users’ data transferred to Facebook.

“The company explained that it could not supply the sample requested by the CNIL since it is located in the US, it considers that it is only subject to the legislation of this (US) country,” CNIL posted on its website late on Monday. “As a result, the Chair of the CNIL decided to issue a formal notice to the company WhatsApp to comply with the Data Protection Act within one month,” it added.

Facebook acquired WhatsApp in 2014. On August 25, 2016, WhatsApp released a new version of its Terms of Service and Privacy Policy where it explained that “from now on, its users’ data are transferred to Facebook for three purposes: targeted advertising, security and evaluation and improvement of services (business intelligence)”.

“While the security purpose seems to be essential to the efficient functioning of the application, it is not the case for the ‘business intelligence’ purpose which aims at improving performances and optimising the use of the application through the analysis of its users’ behaviour,” noted Chair of the CNIL.

Facebook data
The new guidelines may violate the security concerns of some nations

The watchdog considered that the data transfer for “business intelligence” purpose is not based on the legal basis required by the Data Protection Act for any processing. It then decided to send a formal public notice in order to ensure the highest level of transparency on the massive data transfer from WhatsApp to Facebook Inc. and, thus, to alert to the need for individuals concerned to keep their data under control.

This is not the first incident where WhatsApp-Facebook data sharing has been condemned. Germany has also ordered Facebook to stop collecting data from WhatsApp users. After repeated criticism, Facebook also agreed to stop collecting WhatsApp user data in the UK. IANS

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Your Time On Facebook’ May Soon be Monitored

Previously, companies such as Apple and Google have rolled out features to keep a tab on the time people spent on their computers and smartphones

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Your Time On Facebook' May Soon be Monitored
Your Time On Facebook' May Soon be Monitored. Pixabay

Facebook has reportedly introduced a new feature, tentatively titled “Your Time On Facebook”, that would provide information about how much time users spent on the platform each day in a week, along with the average time spent on the site per day.

The new feature would offer users the option to set a daily time limit as well as a link to manage their Facebook notifications, TechCrunch reported late on Friday.

“We’re always working on new ways to help make sure people’s time on Facebook is time well spent,” a Facebook spokesperson was quoted as saying by TechCrunch.

Representational image.
Representational image. Pixabay

Previously, companies such as Apple and Google have rolled out features to keep a tab on the time people spent on their computers and smartphones.

“This self-policing could be important since both iOS and Android are launching their own screen time monitoring dashboards that reveal which apps are dominating your attention and can alert you or lock you out of apps when you hit your time limit,” the report added.

Also Read: Facebook Expands Fact-Checking Tools, Will Flag Photos and Videos

According to the report, Facebook claimed that the feature is in development, although it would not say when or even if it would be launching for all users. (IANS)

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