A letter has been sent to Whatsapp CEO Will Cathcart by the Indian Ministry of Information and Technology. Facebook Inc-owned Whatsapp made new policies, which states that users have to accept to use the app. The new policies will allow the chat app to share more usage data with Facebook, which is its parent company, as well as help its rollout an e-commerce component within the app.
The government has given seven days of span for the response and if no satisfactory response is received, necessary steps in consonance with the law will be taken, says the sources.
“In fulfillment of its sovereign responsibility to protect the rights and interests of Indian citizens, the government of India will consider various options available to it under laws in India,” the letter reads.
However, many users started using other chatting apps like telegram, after new privacy policies started popping up in Whatsapp, asking users to accept it or lose access to Whatsapp by the end of February.
It has also stated that: “As you are doubtlessly aware, many Indian citizens depend on WhatsApp to communicate in everyday life. It is not just problematic, but also irresponsible, for WhatsApp to leverage this position to impose unfair terms and conditions on Indian users, particularly those that discriminate against Indian users vis-à-vis users in Europe.”
Read more updates about the Whatsapp data policies in https://thedigitalhacker.com/centre-urges-hc-to-suspend-whatsapps-
The fact that WhatsApp has different policies for various users is also a source of contention for the authorities. The identical policy that WhatsApp is imposing on Indian users will not be adopted in the EU, for example. The letter goes on to ask WhatsApp 14 questions about how user data is used and what kind of privacy protections users receive.
WhatsApp said in response to a lawsuit filed in the Delhi High Court earlier this month that numerous Indian companies follow similar procedures and disclose more data. Food delivery firm Zomato, ride-hailing company Ola, online grocer BigBasket, and Swedish firm Truecaller, which claims India as its largest market by consumers, were all included in the petition.