Before you just click accept on WhatsApp’s new Terms and Conditions, you should read this article. Most people never read terms and conditions but you should. This article will just highlight a few changes we thought you might want to review. But if data-sharing between Whatsapp and Facebook doesn’t phase you then sure, go ahead and just accept the new Terms and Conditions.
As you recall WhatsApp was bought by Facebook back in 2014. Many users of WhatsApp feared that it would immediately begin sharing their information with Facebook and become spammy with Facebook type Ads. Well that did not necessarily happen so most users were happy. WhatsApp however has amended it’s Terms and Conditions (Latest update at writing this article is August 25, 2016). With the new Terms and Conditions, it is clear that the company will now share your WhatsApp information with Facebook and vice-versa.
“As part of the Facebook family of companies, WhatsApp receives information from, and shares information with, this family of companies. We may use the information we receive from them, and they may use the information we share with them, to help operate, provide, improve, understand, customize, support, and market our Services and their offerings.”
The New terms explicitly state that the Facebook Family of Companies may use information from WhatsApp towards making product suggestions such as friend suggestions or connections, or other content and showing relevant Ads and offers. WhatsApp states that users’ messages will not be shared on Facebook for other users to view but merely be used to improve the application’s operations and services.
“Facebook will not use your WhatsApp messages for any purpose other than to assist us in operating and providing our Services.”
Soon, thanks to this change in the Terms and Conditions, you may start getting automated whatsApp notifications from businesses on for example, receipts on your purchases, bank account notifications, national threat levels, flight delays etc
You can opt out of the condition on the new Terms and Conditions granting WhatsApp permission to share your account information with Facebook for use in Ad targeting. Your WhatsApp will still work just fine. Note that WhatsApp will still share your information with Facebook for other purposes.
“…the Facebook family of companies will still receive and use this information for other purposes such as improving infrastructure and delivery systems, understanding how our services or theirs are used, securing systems, and fighting spam, abuse, or infringement activities.”
Here are different ways you can opt out from use of your WhatsApp account information for Ad targeting…
You may opt out of sharing your WhatsApp private information when you see the app’s new terms of service popup or notification. Simply select “read” to view the full document and scroll all the way to the bottom where you’ll see a checkbox that says “share my WhatsApp account information with Facebook to improve my Facebook ads and products experiences…”. Uncheck that checkbox then select AGREE.
If you jumped the gun and quickly accepted the Terms and Conditions you have 30 days from time of first accepting the terms to change your mind and stop WhatsApp from sharing your information with Facebook for use in Ad targeting.
From your smart phone, navigate to Settings —> Account —> Share my account info selected. Uncheck the box to opt out of the sharing to Facebook.
You can read more on the new Terms and Conditions on WhatsApp’s legal page within their official website.
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