Europe puts the kibosh on personal info sharing between Facebook and WhatsApp

Europe puts the kibosh on personal info sharing between Facebook and WhatsApp
Say what you will about Europe's socialist ways, but when it comes to standing up for the little guy and privacy protections, the US has a thing or two to learn on how to deal with the growing influence of the Silicon Valley tech giants. Besides slapping Google and Apple with monopoly and tax evasion fines, or taking them to court about the way they treat developers, Europe also has something called the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in the pipeline.

The legislation will be enforced in May, and part of it demands that tech companies show utmost respect for their users' privacy, and avoid cross-platform information sharing. Facebook, for instance, owns the WhatsApp messenger, and could grab your phone number from there, or the chat app could provide ad-targeting knowledge to your account.

Yesterday, however, the UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) ruled that only basic WhatsApp data processing provided by Facebook will be allowed to be shared between the two platforms legally. France has added to the injury by demanding that all personal data sharing but the most basic required for the chat app functioning, should be stopped, and has given an ultimatum that Facebook complies before GPDR kicks in. 

Thus, while Mr Zuckerberg escaped unscathed in terms of fines this time, Europe's digital privacy laws are now stopping all nefarious sharing activity between the beloved WhatsApp messenger, and the Facebook mothership.

source: BBC

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