It has been two years since Facebook acquired instant messaging app, WhatsApp. Back then, users were promised that their privacy would be upheld and their personal data not shared. That promise is about to be broken. WhatsApp has said that it will soon begin to share some member information with Facebook.
We knew it as going to happen. Facebook is no respecter of privacy. How could Facebook own a huge messaging platform like WhatsApp and not someday use all that user information to its own benefit? And now, this is how the New York Times says WhatsApp user data will be used to benefit Facebook:
As part of the changes, the internet messenger added, Facebook will be able to use a person’s phone number to improve other Facebook-operated services, such as making new Facebook friend suggestions, or better-tailored advertising.
WhatsApp’s announcement means that the phone numbers and analytics data it has of users will be handed over to Facebook. In the future, we can expect even more data to be shared. One promise has been broken. More will be. If you have run away from Facebook but still use WhatsApp, you might as well embrace Facebook now.
Resistance is futile.