Facebook to Shut Down WhatsApp Messaging for Users Who Reject Updated Privacy Terms

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The popular Facebook-owned messaging service WhatsApp will reportedly block users who refuse to accept its updated privacy terms and conditions from using the service.

TechCrunch reports that WhatsApp has stated that users who refuse to accept its new update terms and conditions by May 15 will be unable to receive or send messages using the service. The user’s account will be listed as “inactive.” Inactive accounts on WhatsApp are eligible for deletion after 120 days.

In an email to one of its merchant partners, WhatsApp stated that it will “slowly ask” users that have not accepted the new terms to comply “in order to have full functionality of WhatsApp,” starting in May.

Calls and notifications of inactive users should last for a “short while” according to TechCrunch, but probably only a “few weeks.”

WhatsApp received significant backlash from some users when it first announced changes to its privacy policy. Last month users received an in-app alert that said they had until February 8th to agree to the planned privacy terms if they wanted to continue using the service.

WhatsApp stated that the privacy update had created confusion amongst its users leading to the backlash. As a result, the company chose to delay the launch of the new privacy policy.

In a blog post last month, WhatsApp stated: “We’ve heard from so many people how much confusion there is around our recent update. There’s been a lot of misinformation causing concern and we want to help everyone understand our principles and the facts.”

WhatsApp’s privacy policies have granted the service permission to share certain metadata such as user phone numbers and device information with Facebook since 2016. The new privacy policy will allow Facebook and WhatsApp to share payment and transaction data in order to help them better target ads.

Lucas Nolan is a reporter for Breitbart News covering issues of free speech and online censorship. Follow him on Twitter @LucasNolan or contact via secure email at the address [email protected]

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