Science & Tech

WhatsApp is sharing your phone number with Facebook - here's how to stop it

WhatsApp is sharing your phone number with Facebook - here's how to stop it

If you’ve been getting some oddly accurate Facebook ads, it might be because of a slight but very important tweak in WhatsApp’s terms and conditions.

Facebook bought WhatsApp for $19bn (£14.5bn) back in 2014. Following the recent decision to share WhatsApp's user data with the social media giant, people are angry with what they perceive as a breach of privacy.

In a statement, the UK’s information commissioner Elizabeth Denham said:

The changes WhatsApp and Facebook are making will affect a lot of people. Some might consider it’ll give them a better service, others may be concerned by the lack of control.

Our role is to pull back the curtain on things like this, ensuring that companies are being transparent with the public about how their personal data is being shared, and protecting consumers by making sure the law is being followed.

So how can you stop this from happening?

1. Don’t agree to the terms and conditions straight away

When the pop up to accept the new terms and conditions comes on your screen, go to “read more” and un-tick “Share my WhatsApp account information with Facebook.”

If you’ve already agreed, not to worry, you might still be able to opt out:

2. Opt out within 30 days

If you go to your WhatsApp settings, click on “accounts” where you will find the option to “Share my accounts info.” You can now unselect it.

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