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WhatsApp is Giving your Information to More than Just Facebook

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Last week, WhatsApp users complained when it was revealed that the world’s most popular messaging app would start sharing user data with Facebook.
WhatsApp, which was purchased by Facebook for $19 billion in 2014, announced that user data would be used to deliver more customized Facebook ads to your news feed. In more straightforward terms, WhatsApp is taking everything it knows about you and selling that information to advertisers.
Now, there’s been some miscommunication over what this privacy sharing entails. Some people have written tutorials on how to opt-out of this sharing, for example. Many people believe that the data is only being shared with Facebook. However, we know now that this is not entirely true.

You’re Agreeing to Share your Information with More than Just Facebook
When you read the new WhatsApp privacy policy, you’ll see frequent reminders that all of your messages are encrypted from end-to-end. In addition, however, the privacy policy specifically mentions that you’re sharing your WhatsApp data with more than just Facebook – you’re sharing it with “other companies in the Facebook family”, including Atlas, Instagram, Onavo, Parse, Moves, Oculus, LiveRail (also known as Facebook Audience Network), and Masquerade.

What Type of Data is WhatsApp Using?
So which part of your personal data is at risk? Essentially, you’re agreeing to share all of the information you’ve entered through your WhatsApp account, including information you provided and information provided about you by other users. Here’s what’s specifically mentioned in the WhatsApp privacy policy:

Your Account Information
Your Connections
Usage and Log Information
Status Information
Information Others Provide About You
Third Party Providers

How to Opt Out
You can’t fully opt out of WhatsApp’s new sharing policy with Facebook. However, you can turn off some parts of tracking from the WhatsApp settings menu.

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