WhatsApp Privacy Terms Acceptance Deadline Postponed Till Further Notice
Like that unread text from your ex, the new WhatsApp privacy terms notification has probably been lingering in the back of your mind.
“To accept, or not to accept?” is a question you can mull over for a while longer, now that they’ve delayed the 8 Feb deadline.
Likely to return with updates on 15 May, this will give you about 3 more months to decide.
Users leaving WhatsApp for other messaging platforms
The new privacy terms first raised concerns when users learnt that WhatsApp will start sharing data with Facebook.
Fearful of what that might entail, many started leaving the messaging app for other alternatives like Telegram and Signal instead.
Within days, Signal reportedly recorded over 100,000 downloads, and Telegram, 25 million new users, noted The Straits Times (ST).
Here’s a side-by-side comparison of the 3 services’ privacy features:
Following the mass exodus, WhatsApp is now scrambling to reassure users that their platform is still safe to use.
Delay is to allow WhatsApp to review privacy policies
In a blog post on Friday (15 Jan), the American service acknowledged the confusion and concern after they announced their update.
Hoping to allay people’s worries, WhatsApp debunked several misconceptions:
- End-to-end encryption remains, so WhatsApp & Facebook can’t see private messages
- No messaging or call logs are kept
- WhatsApp can’t see shared locations
- WhatsApp doesn’t share contacts with Facebook
They clarified that the update includes new features allowing people to message a business on the platform. It won’t give greater leeway for them to share any data with Facebook.
Since convincing the public of the above may take time, WhatsApp has decided to push back the date users have to accept their new terms by.
They’ll supposedly take this time to clarify any misinformation and review the policy.
Your account won’t be suspended on 8 Feb
If you’ve been anxious about losing your account, you can breathe easy for a while more as that won’t happen on 8 Feb.
In light of the postponement, WhatsApp assures users that,
No one will have their account suspended or deleted on February 8.
Their review will apparently go on till 15 May, when “new business options are available”, so keep a lookout for any updates then.
For now, you can still continue receiving “Good morning” messages from your aunts and uncles in the extended family chat, and share CNY photos in Feb.
What do you think of WhatsApp’s privacy terms? Let us know in the comments.
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Featured image adapted from PCMag.