Facebook WhatsApp Privacy Monitored by FTC

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Alvin Bryan

Alvin Bryan is a freelance writer and online privacy enthusiast enthusiast currently contributing quality tips and troubleshooting on personal VPN services, and online privacy and security news. You can also find him on Google +.

The FTC has reached out to issue a written warning about user privacy. WhatsApp users and privacy advocates demanded that Facebook keep the original WhatsApp privacy policies. Facebook WhatsApp privacy promises must be honored or the FTC will crack down on the company.

Facebook WhatsApp Privacy Watched by the FTC

FTC Facebook WhatsApp PrivacyFacebook had a run-in with the FTC in late November 2011 over user privacy. So they have a history of promising user privacy and then breaking it. Facebook lied about the privacy of friends lists, sharing permissions, and app data. And they lied about sharing this dishonestly obtained data with advertising companies. Facebook CEO Zuckerberg even openly stated on more than one occasion that he did not care much about user privacy. He called his users dumb for trusting him and said that there is no such thing as online privacy.

The FTC now understandably has Facebook WhatsApp privacy in its sights. Once burned, twice shy, the FTC is closely monitoring Facebook WhatsApp privacy to make sure they comply with the policies they agreed to uphold. The FTC will dig up the settlement that the social media service made in 2011 if they do not keep their word. The FTC also cautioned that Facebook WhatsApp privacy will be strictly held to FTC Section 5 regulations.

Facebook WhatsApp PrivacyThe original WhatsApp privacy guidelines are what attracted many of the app’s users. WhatsApp promised not to record or share the personal data of their users with advertising companies. Facebook must now respect that agreement. The acquisition of the app cannot affect the policies that WhatsApp agreed to. The Consumer Protection Bureau supported this in their written warning to Facebook regarding the FTC settlement and general FTC Act regulations.

Facebook is required to submit to regular audits by the FTC until 2033. This was part of the settlement deal they made in 2012. Facebook WhatsApp privacy will fall under the same scrutiny that other Facebook privacy policies currently submit to. Users and privacy advocates will also be watching Facebook WhatsApp privacy closely. The acquisition of the app is almost complete, and the next few months will be a crucial period.

Many Doubt Facebook WhatsApp Privacy

The Electronic Privacy Information Center and the Center for Digital Democracy along with other groups doubted that Facebook WhatsApp privacy would be honored. These two organizations approached the FTC to urge closer monitoring of the social media giant. The acquisition of WhatsApp marks an important stage in Facebook’s growth. Privacy groups want to make sure that the company stays on track. Millions of WhatsApp users will be added to Facebook’s existing millions. If Facebook WhatsApp privacy does not live up to standards, the potential for privacy breaches will be unfathomable.

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