How To: Opt out of sharing WhatsApp data with Facebook

Here’s a quick and easy method to opt-out from sharing WhatsApp data with Facebook in the latest version of the popular instant messaging app.

Late last week, Facebook announced that in future WhatsApp data will be exchanged with the social network in a bid in order to allow advertisers to target users with specialized ads. Further, a user’s contacts will be cross-referenced on the platform to grant new Friend suggestions.
The change, which is the first to WhatsApp’s privacy policy since its acquisition by Facebook in 2015, has disquieted many users who remained on the instant messaging app for its original promise not to harbour nor enable ads on its platform.
Read: WhatsApp will begin sharing your data with Facebook to target you with ads
Thankfully, there is a way to opt-out of data sharing to avoid your personal information being shared with Facebook. The option is available to users within 30 days of updating the app, and will remove Facebook’s ability to deploy targeted ads.

How do I opt out?

Once users have updated to the latest version of WhatsApp, they‘ll be prompted to accepted updated terms and conditions. To opt out:

  • Tap Read to expand the full terms and conditions
  • Scroll to the bottom
  • Above “˜Agree‘, uncheck the option that reads “œShare my WhatsApp account information with facebook to improve my Facebook ads and products experiences“

The option falls short of allowing users to fully prevent their data from leaving the app, however. WhatsApp’s privacy policy states that information will be used for “other purposes”, such as fighting spam.
WhatsApp has yet to reveal what ads on its platform will look like, though it has clarified that it will allow certain companies to message users directly.
Read: WhatsApp finally gets voicemail support: Here‘s how to use it
What are your thoughts on the fact that WhatsApp data will be shared with Facebook? Be sure to let us know in the comments below!
Follow Bryan Smith on Twitter: @bryansmithSA