WhatsApp Tries To Clear Confusion Surrounding Facebook Data Sharing Policy

hero whatsapp inlist 2
WhatsApp has been embroiled in a flurry of confusion since a change in the company's privacy policy sparked the ire of many. People such as Elon Musk suggested that users switch to rival Signal as it does not collect nearly as much data, and that call to action sparked millions to download Signal. All this chaos did not fall on deaf ears, though, as WhatsApp is pushing back its changes and trying to clean up the mess it made.

Today, WhatsApp penned a blog post in an attempt to make amends and try to clear the air after what happened earlier this week. The explained that it "heard from so many people how much confusion there is around our recent update," and it lays the blame on "a lot of misinformation causing concern." Specifically, the company claims that messages are only between users, and Facebook and WhatsApp can't see them. Furthermore, WhatsApp does not keep logs of messages or calls, and it cannot see shared location data.
whatsapp blog post segment

Since these things seemed to cause a lot of confusion, the date people will have to review and accept the terms is being shoved back until May 15th. The company is also planning to "clear up the misinformation around how privacy and security works on WhatsApp."

Honestly, what was listed was not likely among the chief concerns of users, and what WhatsApp explains could almost be contradictory. Though it states that it does not see shared location data, the privacy policy still says that IP addresses are collected, which can be tied to a location. There is also a line stating that WhatsApp does, in fact, "collect device location information if you use our location features, such as when you choose to share your location with your contacts, view locations nearby or those others have shared with you." The company also states that logs of messages are not kept. However, what logs are being collected when service-related data is saved, such as "your activity (such as how you use our Services, how you interact with others using our Services, and the like)"?

Whether the company's "clarification" of its policies is sufficient or now will be up to its users; many of which have already flocked to Signal. Signal's privacy policy neatly fits into one area below the terms and conditions and is easy to read. Ultimately, as the reader, you are free to choose what messaging platform you will use, but know that companies like WhatsApp may be watching your information with a curious eye.