MANHATTAN, NY –In a ruling from Commission Nationale de I’informatiqu et des libertes (CNIL) in France, it has ordered WhatsApp to block its sharing of user information on Facebook, its developer, and parent company. The messaging app has given a month to abide by this new ruling.
CNIL serves as the strict privacy custodian of France. Upon its investigation about WhatsApp and its updated terms of service, the quorum saw that the messaging app is automatically sharing user data and information on Facebook.
The shared information from the messaging app to Facebook has something to do with targeted mobile advertising, collecting business intelligence-worth of information, and security measure purposes.
CNIL had a thorough investigation of the said case and ruled that WhatsApp’s improved security measures are deemed valid. However, the privacy commissioner was not impressed by the business intelligence information collection, hence the fact that the messaging app did not disclose this said purpose to its users.
In this regard, a user cannot pull out from having his/her information exposed in just simply uninstalling the application. Thus, as per CNIL, it is a complete violation of the users’ fundamental freedom.
In fact, last September 2016, Germany and the UK commanded the social media network to block any data collecting privileges of WhatsApp. In November 2016, the social media giant completely put a halt to collecting user information.
The issue cannot seem to be put to an end. This May 2017, Facebook was penalized by the European Union (EU) a fine of $122 million due to giving deceptive information about its inability to link the instant messaging app to Facebook.
Facebook did seem to take it below par. This led to EU’s September 2017 statement to various social media platforms to cut down on their hate speech. The Union threatened these said platforms legislation if they do not comply.
The instant messaging app by Facebook seems to be in hot water. On the other hand, the social media giant has not released any statement yet confirming if they will follow the CNIL ruling.
Moreover, the UK privacy probe is serious to strike on some enforcement action if and when Facebook continues to collect data from its users without giving them an approval.
CNIL and the whole EU privacy protection sector are protecting its citizens from unorthodox and unsolicited targeted advertising through social networking. The commissions would like to do more presuming so users have more control and command of the content.
The CNIL and EU are on the lookout for Facebook’s immediate and strict compliance to fully revert WhatsApp user information gathering conditions. If not, sanctions will be posted.