A week after Germany banned Facebook's collection and storage of WhatsApp users’ data, the company has agreed to suspend using U.K. WhatsApp users' information for advertisements and product improvement purposes.
“I don’t think users have been given enough information about what Facebook plans to do with their information, and I don’t think WhatsApp has got valid consent from users to share the information. I also believe users should be given ongoing control over how their information is used, not just a 30 day window,” U.K. Information Commissioner Elizabeth Denham posted on the official blog of the organization.
Facebook’s usage of WhatsApp users’ data has come under scrutiny since August, when the company announced that WhatsApp will share information, including user phone numbers for targeted marketing and business usage.
The U.K. Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) initiated an inquiry into the data usage in September and it seems that the government organization has finally pressured Facebook into suspending data collection in the country. Furthermore, ICO has asked Facebook and WhatsApp to sign an undertaking explaining how the companies will collect data and provide users “ongoing control” over what is shared.