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What the new WhatsApp update really means for your account (and your privacy)

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Hollie Richardson
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Woman using WhatsApp on phone

Here’s what you need to know about the latest WhatsApp update.

WhatsApp has been a bit of a lifeline for many of us in lockdown. From those 10-minute voice notes absolutely nothing between friends, to the patchy video calls with mum who still doesn’t understand she doesn’t need to hold the phone to her ear, our phones have helped us stay connected in a world where we can’t physically meet each other. 

So you’ll want to know all about WhatsApp’s latest update and how it affects you. 

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Earlier this year, WhatsApp announced a new privacy update that sparked concerns that it would be sharing inappropriate information with parent company Facebook. 

But the platform now says there has been “misinformation” shared about the update, and it has released a blog post admitting the news should have been explained clearer. 

WhatsApp states that the data it shares with its parent company does not include messages, groups or call logs. Instead, it says the new terms focus on changes to allow users to message businesses.

Read the full post with all the information here.

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WhatsApp also says users will not be able to read or send messages after 15 May if they do not accept the app’s updated terms and conditions of their privacy policy.

Calls and notifications will still function for “a short while” but accounts will then be listed as “inactive” and can be deleted after 120 days.

Woman using WhatsApp at home
Will you be accepting the new WhatsApp update?

In a bid to make things clearer for users, a banner pop up in WhatsApp accounts over the coming weeks. It will provide more information that people can read at their own pace.

The app says that it will eventually start reminding people to review and accept these updates to keep using WhatsApp.

Of course, you’re well within your right to reject the update and even delete your account (if you can accept a world without seven-minute voice notes about the latest Netflix hit). 

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Hollie Richardson

Hollie is a digital writer at Stylist.co.uk, mainly covering the daily news on women’s issues, politics, celebrities and entertainment. She also keeps an ear out for the best podcast episodes to share with readers. Oh, and don’t even get her started on Outlander…