German Regulators Ban Facebook From Using WhatsApp Data

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A recent order by the Hamburg Commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information (HmbBfDI) prohibited Facebook from processing the data of Whatsapp users for the next three months.

The announcement comes after German data protection commissioners launched legal action last month to stop Facebook from collecting and using data from WhatsApp users for its own purposes.

While the Hamburg Data Protection Authority also wants to extend the emergency ban on Facebook by calling on the European Data Protection Board (EDPB) to make it a binding order at the European level, its request to the Irish Data Protection Commission (DPC), the leading European supervisory authority, was not honored yet.

The head of the Hamburg Data Protection agency, Dr. Johannes Caspar, spoke on the objective of the current order: “The order is intended to safeguard the rights and freedoms of the many millions of users who approve to the terms of use throughout Germany. The aim is to prevent disadvantages and damage associated with such a black-box procedure.”

Despite the recent decision, WhatsApp will continue to push ahead with its new privacy policy, which requires users to choose between restricted functionality and consent to its policy of sharing user data with parent company Facebook.

A WhatsApp spokesman told Reuters: “As the Hamburg DPA claims are wrong, the order will not impact the continued roll-out of the update. We remain committed to providing secure and private communications for all.”

For more information, read the original story in Bleeping Computer.

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