The popular messaging app is changing its terms of service with a desire to share more data with Facebook. What about Switzerland?
In recent times, the new normal conditions of WhatsApp have raised questions among its users. Messenger wants to share more data with Facebook, whether you are registered on the social network or not. This change, which should come into effect on February 8, 2021, must be approved by users otherwise they will no longer be able to use the application.
François Schalle, president of the Swiss Association of Data Protection Officers and a lawyer specializing in digital law, said at the program On en Parle. In Europe, these are protected by the General Data Security Regulation (GDPR). Under the terms of WhatsApp, Switzerland is treated like Europe. At the moment, the messaging system cannot share its data with Facebook.
WhatsApp, a gold mine to exploit
For François Charlett, this change in policy is explained by Facebook’s desire to monetize the messaging system purchased in 2014 for $ 22 billion. Because today, WhatsApp is a free and ad-free application that does not earn much. The whole challenge for Mark Zuckerberg’s firm is to be able to get a return on its investment without intimidating its 2.2 billion users.
“With WhatsApp, Facebook is sitting on a mountain of data that it would like to make profitable. But it is not being ascertained that at the moment, at least for Europe” we explained to the lawyer.
What happens if we accept the new terms?
“There should be no noticeable change on 8 February for WhatsApp users in Switzerland and Europe” in what François Shale has read and understood.
The main change is the concern of corporate WhatsApp accounts. In recent times the notification warns users that Facebook may have access to conversations from companies that choose to host their data on Facebook servers: “For example, WhatsApp between a Swiss company’s customer service and Exchange customers can be read and archived by Facebook. ”This change is valid for the entire world.
Fuzzy data usage status
In any case, Facebook and WhatsApp have already been exchanging data for several years, to help the parent company “operate, provide, improve, understand, personalize, support and support” ” [leurs] Services and their offers “, according to their general conditions. A very vague formulation that François Charlet states” that we don’t really know how this data is used by Facebook, or what Facebook actually uses “.
For the expert, the question users should ask themselves today is: does WhatsApp still have privacy in their DNA?
Two safe options
François Chargelet advises users to delete their WhatsApp account, not just to uninstall the application. Regarding the options, he recommends only two: the Swiss application Threma and American Signal.
Interview: Jerem Zimmerman and Yves-Ellen Cornu / afp
Web Conversion: Sylvie Ravasin