WhatsApp privacy policy: reason transferred to SC looking for stay

The Internet Freedom Foundation has turned to the Supreme Court contesting WhatsApp’s updated privacy policy, introduced earlier this month in India. The petitioner sought guidelines to safeguard the personal data and privacy of over 400 million Indian WhatsApp users.

He requested a temporary suspension of the functioning of the new Privacy Policy of the messaging platform. The reason stated that WhatsApp’s 2021 policy is highly invasive and has been unilaterally imposed on Indian internet users.

He urged the Court to grant an interim order, limiting the sharing of any personal data of users by Whatsapp with Facebook for marketing or other purposes. The request for intervention is presented in an appeal filed by Karmanya Singh Sareen and Shreya Sethi in 2017, which had challenged WhatsApp’s 2016 privacy policy. The matter is examined by a constitution bench of the Supreme Court.

It requested the court to order WhatsApp to provide its Indian users with the same standard of privacy protection it provides to users in the European region. It also asked the Court to directly provide its users with an opt-out option when using its services, to allow users to opt out of sharing their data with Facebook for marketing and advertising purposes. Earlier this month WhatsApp had introduced its privacy policy which required its users to accept its terms and conditions, otherwise the accounts and services would be closed after February 8, 2021, for the respective user.

After facing criticism regarding the privacy policy, WhatApp has turned to microblogging site Twitter clarifying that “no one will have their account suspended or canceled on February 8th and we will carry over our business plans until after May”. The previous Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) also filed an appeal to the Supreme Court contesting the new WhatsApp policy stating that the Center has not fulfilled its constitutional duties and responsibilities by protecting citizens’ privacy rights by forcing the petitioner to approach the Supreme Court .

He had been looking for a direction for WhatsApp and Facebook to allow the government to carry out “technical audits” of its data centers, where Indian user data is stored, in order to retrieve and delete such Indian user data. He said that in 2016 Germany, the United Kingdom and the entire European Union had banned a similar action of Facebook who was also asked to delete all data relating to Whatsapp users. (ANI)

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is automatically generated from a syndicated feed.)

News Highlights:

  • The Internet Freedom Foundation has turned to the Supreme Court contesting WhatsApp’s updated privacy policy, introduced earlier this month in India.
  • WhatsApp privacy policy: reason transferred to SC looking for stay