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Soro: ‘Concerned by WhatsApp-FB’s New Policy’

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Soro: ‘Concerned by WhatsApp-FB´s New Policy´
A statement by Mr Antonello Soro, President of the Italian Data Protection Authority
(ANSA, 27 September 2016)

‘The new privacy policy adopted by Facebook and WhatsApp is a cause for serious concern in terms of data protection´, so said Antonello Soro, President of the Italian Data Protection Authority, to ANSA news agency. ‘This massive data flow concerns not only Facebook or WhatsApp users, but also individuals  who have not signed in to either service: their data will be disclosed as well because they happen to be listed in a WhatsApp user´s phonebook.´

‘It should be recalled´, continued Mr Soro, ‘that this data exchange may not take place without data subjects´ consent. Our initial assessment shows that the new rules introduced by WhatsApp do not appear to allow giving consent separately for the individual options: that is, users are basically obliged to accept the terms of use as such, including the data exchange. This actually emphasizes the criticalities we already pointed out in the past. We will now see whether Facebook and WhatsApp will act responsibly and decide, of their own accord, to put on hold this initiative in order to protect users.´