WhatsApp to up the minimum legal age for EU users to 16 next month

WhatsApp has announced that it will be updating its privacy policy and terms of service next month in order to get in line with the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Facebook publicly announced the new policies and the fact that it has established an entity in the EU but it only slipped into its ToS the fact that, from next month, EU users must be aged 16 or older to use the service.

Aside from the age restriction change, the firm also announced that it will let users download the data that the service collects on them – this feature is being planned for roll out in the next update. In the announcement of the feature, Facebook said:

“WhatsApp cares deeply about your privacy and security. Every message and call is secured by end-to-end encryption so that no one, not even WhatsApp, can read or listen to your conversations. In the coming weeks, you will be able to download and see the limited data that we collect. This feature will be rolling out to all users around the world on the newest version of the app.”

Lastly, Facebook said it currently does not share WhatsApp account information to improve the ad experience on Facebook, however, it did reiterate that it plans to “work closer” with other Facebook companies in future. It’s unclear how Facebook plans to do this seeing as it claims that user messages are encrypted, there’s not really any other information they could glean to make ads more appropriate for users.

Source: WhatsApp via BBC News

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