Sunday, 22 July, 2018

WhatsApp bans European under-16s from using app

You'll now need to be 16 to sign up to WhatsApp. Let us know what you think about it. WhatsApp Is Raising Its Age Limit for Some Users
Sherry Houston | 27 April, 2018, 01:03

Policy changes will not impact teen users outside of the European Union, with the reforms aimed at complying with the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) which comes into effect on May 25. As per its new privacy policy that would apply to the European region, all users between 13 and 15 will be required to have a parent or legal guardian agree to their ward using the social media platform. Facebook has since taken a variety of measures to be more transparent about the data the company collects on its users, giving them more control over how their personal information is shared with advertisers and third-party apps.

The changes have been announced in the run-up to the launch of the EU's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) laws, which gives people "more control over how companies use their information", says the BBC.

According to Ofcom around a third of 12-15-year olds in the United Kingdom use WhatsApp on a regular basis, and at the moment the Facebook-owned app doesn't ask users to verify their age. A user can request and export a report of your WhatsApp account information and settings.

Rather than offer that second option, WhatsApp's new Terms of Service suggest a blanket rule which is that you either have to be 16 or you will be banned.

The EU's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is created to give people in the EU greater protection over their personal data.

Facebook is also set to change its rules.

FRANKFURT, April 26 (Reuters) - As Europe nears tough new privacy rules, Facebook reckons the worst that could happen is that users will share less data, making it harder to target ads on the social network that raked in revenues of $12 billion in the first quarter.

WhatsApp will also soon allow users to download a report detailing everything the app knows about you.

"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". WhatsApp says the age-restriction for other countries around the world will remain at 13-years-of-age.

At present, teenagers as young as 13 can sign up to use the messaging service, in similar vein to Facebook's other properties.

While WhatsApp does not now access information in messages or share that information with its sister-companies like Facebook, this may not be a permanent fixture. If this is not done, users will not see the fully personalised version of Facebook.

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