Whatsapp, the popular messenger application has posed serious threats to around 2 billion users that are impossible to resolve.
WhatsApp offers end-to-end encryption for its messaging platform by default, but the platform itself is owned by Meta, known for its privacy-related scandals, and appears to engage in an outstanding amount of data collection. According to some new reports, users who value privacy may be better served jumping to a more secure and private messaging platform.
Those on the fence or who may need a push may also find this video helpful in their decision-making process.
Meta acquired WhatsApp in 2014 for $16 billion. Meta closely eyed WhatsApp primarily because of their user engagement metrics, which were far superior to its messaging platform, Facebook Messenger.
Over the years, as WhatsApp has been assimilated into Meta, WhatsApp has also turned into another data-collecting machine. User messages are still end-to-end encrypted for some reason.
WhatsApp collects an alarming amount of data – including metadata, personal identifying information, payment information, and detailed device data. The more user data Meta has, on average the more money they can make off each user by selling highly accurate profiles of any given user.
Another serious threat is WhatsApp’s “contact upload feature”. it is just as it sounds – WhatsApp will ask for permission to access user contacts and continuously scan the linked contact app for new additions.
WhatsApp can use location data history, Wi-Fi connectivity, and cellular towers to accurately guess who you may know.
WhatsApp has numerous privacy concerns, ranging from the unscrupulous data practices of its parent company (Meta) to its handling and likely collection of user metadata. Users should remember that once data is captured by WhatsApp, it becomes next to impossible for users to control how it’s used or shared.
As previously stated, users are strongly advised to ditch WhatsApp for a secure messaging alternative where appropriate. If possible, users should also try to get their friends and family to switch to more secure and private messengers!