“We wish to reinforce that this update does not expand our ability to share data with Facebook. Our aim is to provide transparency and new options available to engage with businesses so they can serve their customers and grow,” WhatsApp said in its response. Also Read - WhatsApp's Fate Hangs in Balance as New Rules Require to Identify Originator of a Message | EXPLAINED
WhatsApp further stated that it will always protect personal messages with end-to-end encryption, so that neither WhatsApp nor Facebook can see them. “We are working to address misinformation and remain available to answer any questions,” WhatsApp further stated.
The letter noted that with over 400 million users in India, the changes will have a disproportionate impact on the country’s citizens, it said. The Centre also asked WhatsApp to provide details of the services provided by it in India, categories of data collected and permissions and consents sought. It has also asked WhatsApp to withdraw the proposed changes and reconsider its approach to information privacy, freedom of choice and data security.
In the updated policy, it got a right to share data it collected from WhatsApp users with the broader Facebook network, which includes Instagram, regardless of owning any accounts or profiles there. Some businesses, as per the new policy, were to use Facebook-owned servers to store messages.
However, the move from WhatsApp triggered an outcry regardless of its assertion that all private messages between friends and family members remain end-to-end encrypted.
Since the announcement of the new policy, several users have switched to other platforms like Signal and Telegram which are claimed to be more secure than WhatsApp.