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WhatsApp's new user agreement mean in terms of privacy

What does WhatsApp's new user agreement mean in terms of privacy?

WhatsApp's new user agreement mean in terms of privacy

WhatsApp has been sending a warning to its users recently to accept the new privacy agreement or to delete the application from their smartphones.

WhatsApp, a messaging application, warns that the application will be deleted from the phones of those who do not accept the new contract and data sharing rules until February 8.

This situation has led to both Turkey and around the world participate in the application WhatsApp users to delete campaigns.

Recently, interest in the application called Signal, which is an alternative to WhatsApp and attaches more importance to privacy, has increased.

So, according to WhatsApp's new privacy policy, what information will users be shared with Facebook, which owns WhatsApp?

These rules have been in effect since 2016

Since Facebook acquired WhatsApp in 2014, it has been anticipated how the rules regarding data sharing and privacy will change.

Especially the fact that Facebook was not a trusted platform for data sharing and privacy scandals caused this question mark to emerge.

According to Wired magazine, the warning that WhatsApp has recently sent to users' screens is an extension of the changed rules regarding which data will be shared with Facebook in 2016.

That's why these rules have been valid since 2016, according to the magazine.

According to Wired, the new privacy agreement, which came into effect on Monday, is a change in how communications maintained by users with mostly WhatsApp business accounts (WhatsApp Business) will be stored.

In the major update on privacy and data sharing rules in 2016, users were given the option to disable the sharing of some data with Facebook; however, this option is deprecated with the new contract.

The data of more than one billion users who installed the application after 2016 was already shared with Facebook.

Facebook argued in a statement to Wired that the new agreement that came into effect this week does not mean a change in its current privacy policies.

What data will WhatsApp share?

Wired magazine emphasizes that the latest change does not affect the end-to-end encryption application.

This means that the messages, photos or other content you send can only be viewed on your own smartphone or on the devices of the people you send.

WhatsApp and Facebook cannot display the content of messages.

The data that WhatsApp uses and shares is mostly about how you use the application.

The data shared by WhatsApp with Facebook includes your phone number, how long and how often you use WhatsApp, how you interact with other users, information about your device, your IP address, your operating system, browser data, battery health, application version, include mobile network, language and time zone.

According to the permission you gave to WhatsApp at the beginning, your payment data and your location are among the data that can be shared with Facebook.

Speaking to Wired, cryptologist Matthew Green of Johns Hopkins University said, "WhatsApp is good at protecting your privacy regarding the content of your messages. Your privacy on everything else seems to be violated."

Evan Greer, vice president of digital rights group Fight for the Future, told Wired, "I don't trust any product Facebook makes. The business model is based on surveillance, never forget that."

'A valuable data set'

Forbes magazine also points out that WhatsApp collects metadata (metadata).

Forbes reports that WhatsApp thus shares data with whom you message, who you know, when and how often you speak.

"Metadata is data about your data. It can be as powerful as data itself," said Ian Thornton-Trump, chief information security officer at Cyjax, a virtual security company speaking to Forbes.

In his article for Forbes, cybersecurity expert Zak Doffman emphasizes, "If I can pair you with various apps, thanks to your phone number or device ID, I can link your metadata to everything else I know."

Doffman states that metadata is a gray area and the value of this data increases with every activity on messaging platforms.

What ads can you be exposed to?

TechRadar technology news site reminds you that WhatsApp also shares your status, stories and profile photo, and that you can be exposed to advertisements according to these.

If you share information in your WhatsApp status that you want to buy a particular car model, Facebook will transmit this data to advertisers so that you can see ads on Facebook, WhatsApp, Messenger and Instagram accordingly.

It is emphasized that if you use WhatsApp's payment system to shop from a coffee brand or if you share a story on the application that you drink coffee, the possibility of seeing advertisements about your consumption habits will increase.

TechRadar also mentions that if you have a WhatsApp business account, the products you sell may be shared with competitors.

All these concerns about WhatsApp's data security and privacy have made apps like Telegram and Signal more popular.

After Facebook bought WhatsApp, in 2017 and 2018, the founders of WhatsApp, Brian Acton and Jan Koum, left the company respectively.

Acton edits the Signal Foundation a few months later. The institution created the open source Signal Protocol.

Numerous applications such as WhatsApp and Signal are implementing end-to-end encryption technology using this protocol.

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