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WhatsApp goes one further, uses status updates to tackle users' privacy policy concerns

In a move that kickstarted in India, America and Europe, WhatsApp has now taken to the status update feature to restate its commitment to its African users' privacy.

WhatsApp joined its own Status feature Tuesday midnight (Nigerian time) attempting to further counter the widespread "confusion" regarding the incoming updates their privacy policy. WhatsApp says it will also use the feature to share information with its users about changes to the app and upcoming features.

This comes after the messaging app’s announcement of its privacy update caused millions of users to abandon the service and head over to Telegram or Signal instead.

As at the time of publishing, Telegram has harvested approximately 90 million new users from the WhatsApp privacy policy saga. Signal, meanwhile, gained about 50 million new users.

With the clear message to WhatsApp being one of a huge loss of users' trust, they are now pulling all stops to repair this strained relationship with users. First they postponed the policy rollout, and now they appear on our list of new statuses, with the first of the four status updates announcing that “WhatsApp is now on status”, followed by “We’ll let you know about new features and updates here”.

WhatsApp Status update, slide 1

whatsapp privacy policy status update

The second slide reminded users that WhatsApp is still committed to our privacy, and then went on to remind readers that they cannot read our personal conversations, thanks to end-to-end encryption. WhatsApp also promised to share subsequent updates.

Several Nigerian users have so far taken to Twitter to share their reactions to the new development, with most reactions ranging from comic to skeptical.

whatsapp privacy policy status update

For Clarity:

End-to-end encryption ensures that only you and the person you’re communicating with can read or listen to what is sent, and nobody in between, not even WhatsApp can access your chats.

If you will like to verify that your chat is end-to-end encrypted: open the chat, tap on the name of the contact then open the contact info screen. From there, you can tap on Encryption to view the QR code and a 60-digit number.

Nigeria In Focus:

Population: 206.6 million (Compared to South Africa's 59.6 million)

GDP: $504.57 billion (Compared to South Africa's $369.85 billion)

GDP Per Capita: $2,465 (Compared to South Africa's $6,193)