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WhatsApp prepares to share user info with Facebook

Details spotted in a WhatsApp beta build point to a new data sharing policy with Facebook, QR code based encryption and document sharing features.

Published onJanuary 22, 2016


It was likely only a matter of time before Facebook and WhatsApp became more intertwined after the social media giant purchased the messaging service back in 2014. Now the first clues that closer integration is looming have appeared, as users have managed to find some new options tucked away in the latest beta build.

Using some terminal tricks, Javier Santos has reveal a new option to share WhatsApp account information with the main Facebook service, along with a new set of service terms to agree to. The account information will apparently be shared in order to “improve my Facebook experiences”.

Now that WhatsApp is dropping its yearly subscription charge, perhaps Facebook is looking for additional data with which improve the ads that it shows in its main social media app? Facebook also recently announced that it would be introducing ways for users to communication with businesses and vice versa, as is already the case with Facebook Messenger, but this is still in early development.

WhatsApp Facebook data sharing and encryption

Furthermore, there also appears to be a new end-to-end encryption option than can be made to pop up under the security tab. There’s an option to toggle security indicators for users who want to make sure that they’re conversations are secure. QR codes can also apparently be used in order to verify encryption keys with your contacts. According to a separate report, there’s a document sharing feature on the way as well, complete with a new UI tab to help manage your received files.

WhatsApp will soon be free: yearly payment being removed

It looks like there are quite a few changes heading to WhatsApp in the future. Although we should still wait for some official confirmation, as these features might not actually make it into the main public build.

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