Two consumer groups file complaints with the FCC about Facebook-WhatsApp deal

A couple of weeks ago, Facebook had the industry in a frenzy when they announced that they would be acquiring instant messenger app, WhatsApp, for a whopping $19 billion, making it several more times more expensive than what they paid for Instagram which was $1 billion. In a way this is a good move for Facebook as they would acquire one of the world’s most popular and most used instant messaging services, but it seems that not everyone is too pleased about the deal.

Two consumer groups today filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission that asks the agency to investigate Facebook’s pending acquisition of WhatsApp. According to the Electronic Privacy and Information Center (EPIC) and the Center for Digital Democracy (CDD), Facebook is likely to use WhatsApp user data to its advantage, which is not what WhatsApp users expected when they signed up for the messaging app. “Acting in reliance on WhatsApp representations, Internet users provided detailed personal information to the company, including private text to close friends,” the complaint said. “Facebook routinely makes use of user information for advertising purposes and has made clear that it intends to incorporate the data of WhatsApp users into the use profiling business model.”

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