Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) Warned Of Severe Action On Merging WhatsApp Data In Europe

Data watchdogs in Europe are talking tough over Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB)’s persistent use of data collected from its messaging app, WhatsApp, for advertising purposes.  The head of a panel that brings all the region’s privacy watchdogs together, Isabelle Falque-Pierrotin, has now called for additional action to stem the behavior for the last time.

Facebook Vs Regulators Stand Off

The regulators want the company to stop using data from the messaging app for purposes not included in the terms of service that people agree to, when signing up.  That is, however, turning out to be a challenge given that the giant networking company is aggressively looking for ways to monetize one of its most priced asset bought for $22 billion.

The EU’s privacy regulators are set to meet next month having already warned the tech giant that its action of merging data from WhatsApp was not necessarily welcomed.  Facebook on its defense insists that it only uses data collected from the messaging app based on the privacy policy and terms of services that users agree to.

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Targeted Advertising Vs Privacy

How true that is, is still a point of discussion given that  merging data from WhatsApp and Facebook goes a long way in enhancing targeted marketing something that advertisers are known to  like.  While the company continues to pursue efficiency in targeted advertising, Emarketer analyst, Debra Aho Williamson believes the same will always trigger privacy concerns from regulators.

“There’s always the specter of regulation when it comes to targeted advertising, privacy is always lurking in the background as a serious concern,” Williamson said. “Anything that happens on WhatsApp could trickle into the rest of Facebook as it tries to put the data from all its services into one giant data warehouse,” said Mr. Williamson.

Collaboration between various watchdogs in the region has led to drastic changes on how multinationals handle people’s data. Come 2018 stakes could go a notch higher with the implementation of new rules that propose a 4% fine on total sales of companies that violate people’s privacy.

Facebook stock was up by $0.46 in Tuesday trading session closing the day at $120.87 a share .

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