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Every part about WhatsApp’s new Phrases and Coverage

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Background

Recently, a new WhatsApp notification has notified that it’s terms and policies have changed. Users have been given a deadline of 8th February to accept such terms and policies; or else, the WhatsApp service will get discontinued for such users.

Facebook-owned WhatsApp’s updated policy says that it may share your information with its family of companies to “facilitate, support and integrate their activities and improve our services.”

Whatever information WhatsApp automatically collects from you will be shared with Facebook. This includes your mobile phone number and basic information you give when you create a WhatsApp account.

Information that the user provides to the WhatsApp

Account information

Mobile Number, Profile Name, Profile Picture and ‘about’ information.

Messages

Messages are not retained in the ordinary course. Messages are stored in the device and not typically in the server. Upon the delivery of the message, the message gets deleted from the server (if not delivered, WhatsApp will keep such message for 30 days). Media files if are forwarded, the information w.r.t the media file will be temporarily be stored

Status Info

The status user keeps in their profile, is the information that the user is providing to the WhatsApp.

Transactions and payment data

WhatsApp has launched a payment feature in India, it says that if you use is using the WhatsApp Pay feature, then the additional information, including payment account and transaction information is processed by the company.

This is the information required to complete the transaction such as payment method, shipping details, and transaction amount.

“If you use our payments services available in your country or territory, our privacy practices are described in the applicable payments privacy policy,”

Customer support

If a user contact customer support for any requirement or help then, any information that the user is providing while such process will be stored by WhatsApp (example: user’s Gmail address)

Information that WhatsApp automatically collects

Usage and Log Information

It collects user’s information regarding their activity on its services (like service-related, diagnostic, and performance information)

This includes information about user’s activity (including how user use the Services, User’s Services settings, how user interact with others using WhatsApp’s Services (including when user interact with a business)

It also collects the time, frequency, and duration of user’s activities and interactions), log files, and diagnostic, crash, website, and performance logs and reports.

It includes information about when the user registered to use WhatsApp Services.

It includes the features users use like WhatsApp messaging, calling, Status, groups (including group name, group picture, group description), payments or business features; profile photo, “about” information.

Information like ‘user is online’, ‘last seen’, and the last updating of ‘about’ information is also collected.

Device and Connection information

WhatsApp collects device and connection-specific information when a user installs, access, or use WhatsApp’s Services.

It includes information such as hardware model, operating system information, battery level, signal strength, app version, browser information, mobile network, connection information (including phone number, mobile operator or ISP), language and time zone, IP address, device operations information, and identifiers (including identifiers unique to Facebook Company Products associated with the same device or account).

Location

WhatsApp collects and uses precise location information from the user’s device (with the user’s permission). If the user does not permit the location sharing information. WhatsApp could still use the IP addresses of the device, phone number area code to estimate the user’s location.

Cookies

WhatsApp uses cookies to operate and provide its Services, including to provide its Services that are web-based, improve user experiences, understand how its Services are being used, and customize them.

The information it receives from Third-Party (Facebook is a third-party service)

WhatsApp receive information about any user from other users.

For example, when other users you know use our Services, they may provide your phone number, name, and other information (like information from their mobile address book) just as you may provide theirs. They may also send you messages, send messages to groups to which you belong, or call you. We require each of these users to have lawful rights to collect, use, and share your information before providing any information to us.

User Reports

Any user can report the activity of other users to WhatsApp. Even a third-party can report the interaction of a WhatsApp user to WhatsApp, If a report is made, then WhatsApp collects information on both the reporting user and the reported user.

Third-Party

Third-party may provide information about WhatsApp users in certain circumstances. For example, Appstore may provide WhatsApp reports to help it fix service issues.

How WhatsApp use the information?

WhatsApp may use the information to customize their services or connect such services with Facebook company products, which the WhatsApp user could potentially use.

It will also use the information to understand user behavior, research purpose, testing new services, features, etc.

It uses the information for the purposes of marketing its services and particularly services of Facebook.

WhatsApp clearly states that, it won’t allow third-party banner ads.

WhatsApp will share user information including messages with certain someone it chooses to communicate with.

User’s phone number, profile name and photo, “about” information, last seen information, and message receipts are available to anyone who uses its Services, although the user can configure its Services settings to manage certain information available to other users, including businesses, with whom the user communicates.

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