Latest WhatsApp Beta lets you export your data in compliance with GDPR
In recent months, the technology industry has started a long-overdue focus on user privacy. We have had headlining news stories about privacy on social networks. In the EU, stronger data protection laws will come into effect soon. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) was adopted back in April 2016, and it will go into application from May 25th, 2018 after a two year transition period. We have explained the implications of GDPR for developers.
The General Data Protection Regulation stipulates that companies must allow users to download a report of their account information. Instagram, which is owned by Facebook, has already released a tool which allows users to download their account data. Now, Facebook-owned WhatsApp, the world’s most popular IP-based messaging app, is also preparing to add a new tool to export user account data in compliance with GDPR. It’s worth noting that WhatsApp has a daily active user base of 1 billion users, which makes GDPR compliance even more important.
WhatsApp beta for Android 2.18.128: the GDPR option is available. You can request your report now! pic.twitter.com/KpaUSR9UTU
— WABetaInfo (@WABetaInfo) April 27, 2018
WABetaInfo found that WhatsApp beta for Android version 2.18.128 contains an option to create a report of users’ WhatsApp account information and settings, which they can access or port to another app. The company nnotes that the report will not include users’ messages.
Users can request a report for their WhatsApp account by going to Settings > Account > Request account info, and the company states that the report will be ready in 1-3 days. Consumers will have “a few weeks” to download their report before it’s deleted, and they can’t cancel their request unless they delete their account. The report contains user data such as group names, contacts, profile photos, etc.
Right now, the create report option is only available in the latest WhatsApp beta for Android. Users can expect it to arrive in the stable version of WhatsApp in the coming weeks, which will ensure that the company complies with the EU’s most robust data protection law yet.