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WhatsApp sues Indian government: Say New Media Rules Can Violate User Privacy

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Highlights:

  • WhatsApp sues the Indian government, as new social media rules violate privacy policy.
  • The traceability would force private companies to collect and store each information.
  • The new rules will not allow a company to provide end to end-to-end encryption.

WhatsApp has filed a legal complaint in Delhi against the Indian government regarding New social media policy. They said their message system is end-to-end encrypted and to comply with the law, they would have to break encryption for receivers, as well as “originators”, of messages.

The New Social Media rules by the Indian Government require social media companies to identify the “first originator of information” when authorities demand it. Whatsapp asks the Delhi High Court to declare, one of the new rules is a violation of privacy rights in the Indian constitution.

The problem with traceability:

The new laws requiring messaging apps to “trace” chats, is equivalent to asking them to keep a fingerprint on every single message sent on WhatsApp, which would break end-to-end encryption and fundamentally undermines people’s right to privacy.

End-to-end encryption ensures that nobody other than the receiver can see a particular message. This is the exact opposite of traceability, which would reveal who sent what to whom.

In order to trace even one message, services would have to trace every message,” said WhatsApp in a blog explaining why it opposes traceability.

WhatsApp sues Indian government: The spokesperson said in a statement

“We have consistently joined civil society and experts around the world in opposing requirements that would violate the privacy of our users. In the meantime, we will also continue to engage with the Government of India on practical solutions aimed at keeping people safe, including responding to valid legal requests for the information available to us.”

Legal experts in India have argued that- The traceability provision is unconstitutional in part, because of a Supreme Court decision in 2017, that held people have a fundamental right to privacy.

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