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Plea in Delhi high court against WhatsApp’s new privacy policy

WhatsApp changed its privacy policy in ‘the most arbitrary manner and had made it compulsory for its users to accept its terms and conditions, failing which the accounts and services would be terminated after 8 February 2021 for the respective user,’ said the petition.Premium
WhatsApp changed its privacy policy in ‘the most arbitrary manner and had made it compulsory for its users to accept its terms and conditions, failing which the accounts and services would be terminated after 8 February 2021 for the respective user,’ said the petition.

The plea challenges the policy on the grounds that it violates the fundamental rights of Indians

A plea has been filed in Delhi high court challenging the new WhatsApp privacy policy on the grounds that it violates the fundamental rights of Indian users.

WhatsApp changed its privacy policy in “the most arbitrary manner and had made it compulsory for its users to accept its terms and conditions, failing which the accounts and services would be terminated after 8 February 2021 for the respective user," said the petition.

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Filed by advocate Chaitanya Rohilla, the petition sought guidelines or directions to ensure that any change in privacy policy by the messaging app is carried out in accordance with the fundamental rights guaranteed in Part-III of the Constitution till such time that rules or guidelines are framed by the Centre.

It also sought directions to the ministry of electronics and information technology to ensure that Whatsapp does not share any data of its users with any third party or Facebook and its companies for any purpose whatsoever.

“It virtually gives a 360-degree profile into a person’s online activity. This level of insight into a person’s private and personal activities is done without any government oversight at present or regulatory supervision. Moreover, in the absence of a data protection authority, it leaves the users with a company’s own assurances and privacy policies," the plea said.

“And if WhatsApp is stating that it is now going to use the users data and share it with the largest social network in the world, which is embedded on every second website and collect data from there as well, the integration of this data will essentially mean that the user is perpetually under the surveillance of the Facebook group of companies," the petitioner added.

The matter will be heard on Friday.

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