WhatsApp has confirmed that users will not be able to read or send messages unless they accept the rules for sharing personal data with Facebook. The new terms have triggered setbacks and led to an increase in the popularity of rival apps.
Last month, WhatsApp asked users to accept an update that allows messengers to share personal data, such as phone numbers and locations, with Facebook, which owns the app.
WhatsApp will start to “Slowly ask” users to log off on the new terms to have “Full functionality” of messenger, if they have not done so, before May 1
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The controversy led some to switch to WhatsApp competitors Telegram and Signal, where the latter was pressured by Elon Musk. Both services have seen an increase in downloads in recent weeks.
WhatsApp wrote on the company’s blog on Thursday that users’ private messages will continue to be secure. “We will always protect your personal calls with end-to-end encryption so that neither WhatsApp nor Facebook can see these private messages,” said the company.
It added that the update will allow users to chat with businesses or shop online, and this feature will be “Absolutely optional.”
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