A German regulator is the latest to object to data being shared between WhatsApp and Facebook, and is taking steps to stop it.
WhatsApp and Facebook drew worldwide ire when it was announced that WhatsApp user data would be shared with other Facebook-owned companies. The backlash was immediate, with Facebook initially delaying the move to give people time to adjust. Ultimately, however, the company is moving forward with its plans, and users will either have to accept the change or lose access to WhatsApp.
A German regulator wants a third option, according to Bloomberg, with the regulator for Hamburg seeking an order that would block the data sharing. Given the data sharing is set to go into effect May 15, the regulator is seeking an order that would be “immediately enforceable.”
“WhatsApp is now used by almost 60 million people in Germany and is by far the most widely used social media application, even ahead of Facebook,” Johannes Caspar, the data commissioner, said in a statement. “It is therefore all the more important to ensure that the high number of users, which makes the service attractive to many people, does not lead to an abusive exploitation of data power.”
India has similarly taken steps to block data sharing between the services. With Germany now taking action as well, more jurisdictions may start taking a closer look and enacting privacy protection measures before it’s too late.